Saturday 4th February 2023

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Pat Buchanan Puts Down His Pen

February 4, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on Pat Buchanan Puts Down His Pen

By CHRISTOPHER MANION

“Every great movement — social, political, or religious — in its infancy, is marked by militancy. Its faithful shine with a spirit of sacrifice, a willingness to accept defeat and humiliation rather than compromise principle. Its True Believers are impatient, to the point of intolerance, with the half-hearted and the half-committed. He who is not with us is against us. That is the way we were. And that is the temper of the bugle called to battle” — Pat Buchanan, in his 1990 introduction to Barry Goldwater’s Conscience of a Conservative.
As we reported last week, Pat Buchanan has announced that he is retiring his column, which has been featured in The Wanderer for decades.
Words fail me — but they never failed Pat.
I’m eight years younger than Pat, but we both consider 1960 to be a pivotal year in molding our conservative lives. In honoring his vast contribution to conservative thought, I focus on his introduction cited above because my father, Clarence Manion, published Goldwater’s Conscience of a Conservative in 1960 after every major publisher rejected it.
That calls to mind one of my favorite lines from Pat:
“In the 1960s, there were no conservative opportunists, because there were no opportunities for conservatives.”
Since the greats of the publishing trade rejected the Goldwater book, my dad seized the opportunity to publish it himself. It became one of the greatest political best-sellers in memory.
“No opportunities.” That fact, well stated, was liberating: the pre-Woodstock conservatives of my generation were free to speak our minds because nobody owned us. We weren’t getting funding from anybody. The fuel in our tanks was principles, not propaganda.
That was a terrific opportunity.
Pat was indeed “Right from the Beginning.” He was a natural to write the introduction to the new release of Goldwater’s Conscience thirty years later. At the request of Al Regnery, our family gave Regnery Publishing the rights because we knew that they would release the book not to bury Barry but to praise him.
Pat’s words 33 years ago are as valid today as they were in 1990, when he described the spirit of Ronald Reagan’s campaigns of 1968, 1976, and 1980:
“Like every smug establishment, the GOP was deaf to the sound of the trudging feet of the coming revolution. Relying, as ever, on money and media power, it could not match the fervor of those who fought for the true faith.”
Wait — could that have been the same spirit that caught the Bush ascendancy off-guard when Donald Trump walked off that elevator in Trump Tower on June 16, 2015?
Does the pendulum really swing back after all?

A Love Story:
In Love With The Truth

“Like a first love, the Goldwater campaign was, for thousands of men and women now well into middle age, an experience that will never recede from memory, one on which we look back with pride and fond remembrance. We were there on Saint Crispin’s day!”
And today, 33 years later, we’re all wearing the bottoms of our trousers rolled, but some things haven’t changed. Goldwater condemned LBJ’s “paranoia and cold deceit” after the election of 1964. Have we heard Republicans use those terms today regarding Joe Biden?
Where’s the beef?
And does this sound familiar? “Conservatives in 1964 were utterly unprepared for the savagery of the no-holds-barred campaign conducted by the Left…the portrayal of ‘Mr. Conservative’ as a warmonger, racist, and enthusiast of fascism was a lie, a Big Lie that convinced millions of young conservatives that the press’ claim to objectivity and neutrality in national politics was a textbook case of consumer fraud. In the campaign of ’64, conservatives acquired a distrust of the media that yet endures.”
The Left’s epithets have hardly changed at all, but their embrace of the dialectic has intensified. Today Biden is the warmonger, but Trump is still both “Hitler” and a “Putin Stooge” — and even the Left doesn’t believe the media anymore.
But consider one haunting particular that abides:
“In 1960, the difference between liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans, was narrower than today. In the 1950s, Americans agreed about what the good society was; we disagreed over how to reach it.”
This disagreement has become an abyss. And it’s almost Biblical. Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch, who brought the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case before the Supreme Court, had it right on the morning of the 50th March for Life last month: State legislatures can pass pro-life laws, but they can repeal them after the next election. We have to change the culture, from the bottom up — an almost insurmountable task in a world where no one will even agree to what “the good Society” is.
And we can’t do it without recognizing that without God, there is no “good society” at all.

Crossing The River

Catholics worldwide are mourning the loss of Howard Walsh, a champion of the Church and the family, of the Holy Mass and Catholic truth.
Howard, a Third Order Carmelite, grew up in an Irish Catholic family in the Bronx. After two years in parochial school, “a nun brought Howard home from school, told his mother that Howard was unteachable, and instructed that he was not allowed to return,” his family writes.
That blunder was a right up there with Green Bay Packers’ coach Bart Starr’s choice of a no-name nose tackle instead of Joe Montana, fresh out of Notre Dame, in the third round of the 1979 Pro Football draft. Howard grew up to be a brilliant engineer, and the precision tool and fastener company he co-founded eventually boasted over 200 employees.
Howard met his lovely wife Eleanor at a New Year’s Eve party in 1965. He proposed to her after Mass the next morning.
Smart move.
During his life devoted to Catholic truth and spreading it, Howard founded Keep The Faith (https://keepthefaith.org/), which has distributed hundreds of thousands of Catholic books, videos, cd’s, MP3’s and tapes around the world. These include one of the largest collections of talks and other audios of Bishop Sheen, all of them available for download from Keep the Faith’s website.
Under Howard’s guidance, Latin Mass Magazine became an indispensable source for traditional Catholics, students, and scholars (even some of our Wanderer writers have occasionally wandered over to the pages of Latin Mass).
Howard was also a supporter of countless Catholic causes and institutions. He sponsored conferences and forums that featured speakers from all over the world. Many friendships were formed at those marvelous gatherings, and thousands of grateful Catholics will miss him. We offer our condolences and prayers to his lovely wife Eleanor, whose smile lit up every room she entered, to his children, and to his dozens of grandchildren and great-grandchildren who share the burden of his loss.

Crossing The Ocean

The news of George Neumayr’s death in Africa last month has stunned the world of Catholic journalism.
George came from a distinguished Catholic family; his father, Jack Neumayr, starred on Notre Dame’s basketball team as an undergraduate, and he worked with Dr. Ron McArthur to found Thomas Aquinas College in 1969.
George had all the fight of his father and more. He was a freelance Catholic journalist of the junkyard dog variety. His investigations got him banned from both the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception (while investigating the notorious Msgr. Rossi) and the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in the Diocese of Richmond (while investigating the also notorious Bishop Barry Knestout).
George died of malaria while visiting the Ivory Coast to learn more about the Church there. We offer our prayers and condolences to his lovely mother Bridget, as well as to his brothers and sisters and their families.
May Howard Walsh and George Neumayr rest in peace.

Without Their Parents’ Knowledge . . . UK Schools Are “Socially Transitioning” Gender-Confused Children

February 3, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on Without Their Parents’ Knowledge . . . UK Schools Are “Socially Transitioning” Gender-Confused Children

By JONATHON VAN MAREN

(LifeSiteNews) — This year alone, I’ve written a half dozen stories about how trans activists have successfully fought to cut parents out of conversations with their own children about gender and changing sexes. We covered the story of medical professionals being trained to have conversations with children while parents are out of the room, and the story of how it has become standard practice in the Canadian public school system to withhold information from parents when their children decide (or are persuaded) to identify as a different gender, with students being warned not to tell parents about their classmates’ identity.
The Daily Mail has just published a report describing similar practices in the United Kingdom, a story that has become common wherever gender ideology takes root. It describes a Swindon mother, Patricia Chalmers, checking for unwashed sports clothes in her 14-year-old daughter Esme’s school bag, and finding a teacher’s letter addressed to Lex. Confused, the mother called the school.
“Esme had been dressing differently for months, no longer wearing the skirts or dresses she’d loved when she was younger and was instead wearing baggy hoodies and jeans,” she told the Mail. “She’d chopped off her long hair into a short crop. I was absolutely fine with it. She’s a teenager. She can dress how she wants. But I’d also discovered she was ordering chest binders (which flatten the breasts) and I was worried she’d hurt herself. I’d read up on gender identity and reassured her she could be as gender non-conforming as she wanted, but I wasn’t going to let her harm her body. She was still developing. So, I wondered if the change of name was connected to this.”
But when she phoned the school, the receptionist told her that the name change “must be a mistake.” Patricia followed up with an email to be sure, iterating that the school should be using her daughter’s name and not a different one. In response to that email, the school told her the truth:
“They took a day to respond but eventually replied saying that in keeping with their Equality, Inclusion, and Diversity policy, they had “socially transitioned” [when you refer to someone by different names and pronouns to match their gender identity] my daughter and were referring to her with the gender-neutral name Lex and they/them pronouns. I burst into tears. Esme had not mentioned anything to me, but I knew social transition could harm her mental health. She is on the autistic spectrum and has suffered with anxiety and depression. Changing her identity to one thing at school and being something else at home could make things even more difficult for her. I couldn’t believe the school had done this behind my back. How dare they? I was livid.”
Indeed, the National Health Service has recently released a report advising against the practice of “social transition” — a practice that has already been adopted by many schools, which ironically have to ask for parental permission for virtually everything else, including supplying a child any kind of medicine. According to a parental support group called Bayswater Support, founded by concerned parents in 2019, over 850 parents of children identifying as transgender have contacted them for support.
“Parents tell us that when they try to engage constructively with schools, it is often implied that they are a risk to their own children,” they noted. “Teachers should be more mindful of the most common underlying conditions — autism, ADHD, trauma and internalized homophobia — and be wary of inadvertently pushing minors towards irreversible medical and surgical treatments.”
Tanya Carter of Safe Schools Alliance confirmed that this is a growing trend, telling the Mail: “This is an increasing issue with schools acting as if they have the right to strip parents of parental responsibility, but they don’t — only courts do. The misapprehension that schools should keep secrets from parents is so entrenched that there is now even a check box school management system to say whether a child’s preferred pronouns should only be used in schools.
“But the UK government is clear that part of parental responsibility is ‘naming the child and agreeing to any change of name.’ We hope to see legal action on this, though many parents are deterred by the fear of further undermining a relationship with their child already damaged by activist teachers, not to mention the expense and stress of pursuing a case.”
The Mail spoke to many parents who were cut out of critical conversations about their children by school staff. A 52-year-old finance manager named Sally Mellor and her husband Gordon found out that their daughter Eleanor had been “socially transitioned” to a boy named “Jude” at the school without their knowledge after she had joined the LGBTQ club and decided to identify as non-binary (she felt awkward being the only straight girl there). They contacted a clinical psychologist, who strongly advised against affirming Eleanor’s belief that she was not female. When they relayed this to the school, they were bluntly told that they had no say. According to Sally:
“He said that they were focusing on Jude’s wellbeing and mental health, and they would be affirming ‘their’ identity. I was stunned. We immediately asked for a meeting and went to the school and repeated the advice we were given by the clinical psychologist — that Eleanor was not to be socially transitioned by anyone. But again, we were told that as parents we had no rights to do that. My jaw was on the floor. You think you are dealing with educated professionals, but they refused to listen.”
When Eleanor began identifying as male a few months later and school staff again affirmed this, once again Sally and her husband found out accidentally:
“We were horrified that they had done this and repeated the view of the psychologist that she had adopted this new identity to cope with the bullying and we offered to put them in touch with experts in this field. But this time, their response was to report me to social services. I got an email saying that the school was concerned that my child was at the ‘threshold for child protection’ which terrified me. Child protection is the most serious thing a school can report a parent for as it’s indicating abuse. You can have your children taken from you. I was interviewed by social services and — thankfully — they were very understanding and could see we were not abusive. We were doing everything we could to help our child.
“They dropped the case after two months. But the school continued to report me even after the case was closed. It’s constant stress. We didn’t know what the school was going to do next.”
Sally and her husband decided to pull Eleanor from the school, although at time of writing, she was still identifying as male. It is stories like this — certainly hundreds, perhaps thousands of them — that have activists warning that the government needs to take firm action to rein in schools and their radical staff.
Stephanie Davies-Arai of Transgender Trend told the Mail that the Department of Education needs to be “really clear in its guidance and tell students that they have no business in socially transitioning children — it’s an activist demand and schools should not be following the demands of political activists. We don’t know the scale of this problem. But for years, local authorities across the UK have been promoting guidance from lobbying groups such as Stonewall — which presents social affirmation as the only legitimate response to a child who says they are trans. So we imagine this is prevalent.”
Many parents wonder if their children would have embarked on the path to cross-sex hormones and sex-change surgeries if school staff hadn’t socially transitioned them and affirmed their dysphoria. Patricia’s daughter Esme, she says, now “seems to be showing signs of wanting to revert to ‘being female’.” Patricia noted that “she seems more and more comfortable with the idea of being a woman, and is even talking about settling down in the future and becoming a mum. But because she’s been called Lex at school and they’ve referred to her as they and them for so long, naturally she’s finding it difficult to desist. Like any teenager she’s embarrassed to say: ‘Actually, I got this wrong, I don’t want to be this anymore.’ That’s another reason why I can’t forgive the school for what they did.”

After An Evil Political Career . . . Why Does Pelosi Suddenly Worry About Having To Expel Demons From Home?

February 2, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on After An Evil Political Career . . . Why Does Pelosi Suddenly Worry About Having To Expel Demons From Home?

By DEXTER DUGGAN

A national Catholic blogger told The Wanderer that former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat from San Francisco, “could do so much good if she became the Bernard Nathanson of Congress,” but the blogger doubted this would happen.
The pro-abortion Pelosi suddenly was in the news again recently when reports said she sought to have her home exorcised by priests from evil spirits after her husband, Paul, was attacked there by a man wielding a hammer in October 2022.
The blogger, Mary Ann Kreitzer, who runs the Virginia-based Les Femmes — The Truth, coincidentally had attended the same school as Pelosi in Washington, D.C., Trinity College, now named Trinity Washington University, but Pelosi had graduated by the time Kreitzer entered in 1964.
Bernard Nathanson, MD, was an atheist radical leader of the national pro-abortion movement starting in the 1960s. He became a strong pro-lifer after the 1970s and later converted to the Catholic Church before dying of cancer in 2011 at age 84.
Nathanson’s book Aborting America, published in 1979 by a major house of that time, Doubleday, reflected on how his thinking was changing.
He repeatedly publicly said he took blame for helping to create a monstrous moral evil. The New York Times loved Nathanson when he promoted permissive abortion but lost its taste for him when he admitted he had been wrong.
Pelosi claims to be a practicing Catholic but is militantly pro-abortion and has expressed deep agreement with pro-abortion thinking and activism. This disqualifies her from being a Catholic in good standing.
A news story posted at the New York Post website on January 21 said, “Pelosi has long referred to herself as a devout Catholic, despite her vociferous pro-abortion advocacy in opposition to Church teaching. Critics all but climbed the walls in reaction to the head-spinning news” about the exorcism.
Above this was a photo of Pelosi looking delighted to visit with Pope Francis at the Vatican in 2022.
In May 2022 the archbishop of her home diocese of San Francisco, Salvatore Cordileone, notified Pelosi that because of her continuing, unrepentant pro-abortion stand, she was not to receive Holy Communion.
This followed a “Rose and Rosary for Nancy” campaign beginning in 2021 that invited Catholics to pray and fast for her change of heart on abortion, signified by delivering roses to her office.
An October 1, 2021, report at the conservative Daily Caller website said, “Catholics delivered 1,000 roses Friday to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s California office in efforts to move the Democrat’s heart on abortion.”

Emotional Attachment

A January 21 report at Fox News said: “Alexandra Pelosi, the daughter of Nancy Pelosi, told The New York Times that her mother called priests to perform an exorcism of the house over Thanksgiving, just weeks after David DePape allegedly attacked Paul Pelosi with a hammer….
“‘I think that weighed really heavy on her soul. I think she felt really guilty. I think that really broke her. Over Thanksgiving, she had priests coming, trying to have an exorcism of the house and having prayer services,’ Alexandra Pelosi told The New York Times,” Fox News reported.
Many people have wondered at the emotional attachment Nancy Pelosi seems to have to the Catholic Church even though she firmly rejects its key moral standards, such as by promoting massive permissive abortion and transgenderism.
Why, in other words, would she want Catholic priests to cast out demons from her home when, due to her public life, she repeatedly invites demons into her soul by what objectively is continual mortal sin? In other words, the same type of seriously immoral life that bad Catholic Joe Biden lives.
Kreitzer, the Catholic blogger, told The Wanderer on January 25 that she initially was taken aback by the idea that Pelosi was concerned about a need to expel demons from her home.
“After I stopped laughing, I thought, ‘If she has a successful exorcism of her home, she’ll have to move out’,” Kreitzer said. “Sad to say, Nancy, the ‘devout Catholic,’ has immersed herself in intrinsic, diabolical evil and publicly revels in it. Jesus made it very clear that those who even scandalize His little ones deserve to have a millstone tied around their necks and be thrown into the sea.
“Nancy doesn’t just scandalize; she is one of Satan’s generals in the war against babies in the womb,” Kreitzer said. “If she doesn’t repent, she may spend eternity suffering a Dante punishment, perhaps being torn limb from limb and having her brain sucked out forever. I pray for the poor woman and send my guardian angel to pray with hers.
“We share the same birthday although she’s about six years older,” she said. “We graduated from the same college and both have five children. She could do so much good if she became the Bernard Nathanson of Congress who repented and spent the rest of his life defending the babies.
“I fear it won’t happen and she’ll go to her grave in the state of unrepented mortal sin. It’s horrifying to think about,” Kreitzer said.
Pelosi regards permissive abortion as necessary to women’s dignity, and any attempts to restrict abortion as assaults upon human rights. These radical beliefs are no more acceptable for a practicing Catholic than an idea that a person should be able to own and kill human slaves.
Her unyielding efforts as the powerful speaker of the House were to impose and expand more permissive abortion. She lost the speakership when the Republican Party won a narrow House majority for the new congressional session. She was replaced as speaker by California pro-life Republican Kevin McCarthy.
She delivered a major address at the 50th anniversary dinner of the radical pro-abortion organization NARAL in September 2019. Pelosi and NARAL share a hardline stand that refuses even to acknowledge the existence of the preborn babies being destroyed. According to her speech transcript provided by her office, Pelosi said in 2019:
“The unified leadership of NARAL and the House is urgently needed at this precarious time for women’s health care and freedoms. Today, as we know, an all-out assault on women’s reproductive freedoms is sweeping the nation, as Republicans seek to impose abortion bans on millions of women in dozens of states.
“These bans violate the Constitution,” Pelosi continued. “They ignore basic morality. They imperil the health and well-being of countless women. And they showcase a radical Republican agenda that will stop at nothing to take away a woman’s right to make her own decisions upon her — about her health, her body, and the timing and size of her family.”
She added soon after: “Every woman should have the freedom to make her own choices about her body and family, no matter her circumstances or means. It’s about respect. It’s about respect.”
And then: “Reproductive rights are human rights, and we won’t stop until they are safe. And, we will organize people across the country to make sure that happens.”
Pelosi then started to salute those who were born after she was, people who had joined the pro-abortion fight, but she had to catch herself before she started talking explicitly, in this ferocious NARAL setting, about being born. But she still slipped up.
Here’s how that went: “Standing together on the shoulders of the advocates and activists who came before, before us — I mean, before many of you, okay? I was there. We will forge a brighter future for ourselves, for our daughters and for generations to come.”
Oops, Nancy just said “daughters” — who were in fact born — and “generations to come.” How are those generations going to arrive if they’re aborted, as Nancy and NARAL so ardently desire.
Then Pelosi, of all things, called for prayer and patriotism. This woman is one piece of work, demanding the unlimited slaughter of innocent preborn infants, then tying it into religion and nationalism.
Bear in mind that when Pelosi spoke at this NARAL dinner, Donald Trump still was president, and during her talk Pelosi had railed against his administration, too.
Having denounced the GOP executive, she said: “This is a very sad time for our country. I say this to you with great sorrow and prayerfulness. We are in a place that I never thought we would be. I never thought that we would see a president take the actions that he has. In fact, I don’t think our Founders ever thought a president would do such a thing.”
She was talking now about Republicans daring to resist her demonic worldview.
“You know, we all pray for our country, it’s why at the close of many meetings we say, ‘God bless you all, God bless America’,” Pelosi said. “Prayerfully, we want God to bless America, but we have to recognize: What is America?”
Pelosi concluded that America is a place to fight for abortion. “So, again, we’re not agonizing. We’re organizing. We will not take — this is not a celebration to say we’ve taken this step. It is a really sad step for us to have to take. But, sadly, we had no choice. So, I thank all of you for your courage and leadership on behalf of American women. God bless all of you, God bless America.”

A Legion Of
Left-Wing Demons

The author George Orwell used the concept of “doublethink” in his novel of totalitarianism, Nineteen Eighty-Four. Doublethink is defined as “the act of believing two contradictory beliefs to be true at the same time without questioning or displaying doubt.”
Nancy Pelosi is a prime example of a doublethinker, praising and imposing massive slaughter and other immorality while invoking prayer and God and, now, being very worried at demons in her house. But not in herself.
The satirical Babylon Bee website predictably found Pelosi’s predicament to be an apt target. On January 24 it posted a satire saying the exorcists had a tough job, but they “credited their superior training in demonology for the successful exorcism.” However, it wasn’t her house they had to heal, but Pelosi herself.
The satire said, “‘When Pelosi began to froth, sizzle, and spasm after we hit her with the Holy Water, we knew we had our work cut out for us,’ said local priest Lee Jameson. ‘We soon realized that a full legion of left-wing demons needed to be expelled through a full exorcism ceremony’.”
There was a happy conclusion, the Bee reported, because Pelosi converted to the Republican Party and proclaimed, “Praise be to Reagan!”

Heaven’s All-Out Battle To Save One Single Human Soul

February 1, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on Heaven’s All-Out Battle To Save One Single Human Soul

By JAMES MONTI

We have all found ourselves in the situation of desperately praying for the conversion of a loved one, a friend or an acquaintance who has strayed from the faith or is totally alienated from God. It can look and feel very much like an impossible task as we become deeply discouraged by the obstinacy of such a person and the experience of praying over a long period, perhaps for many years, with no perceptible change in the person.
And yet we have those reassuring words of St. James that our prayers do make a difference (James 5:16). For in addition to our Lord promising that whenever we ask we shall receive (Matt. 7:7-8), what we are asking for in this case is something particularly dear to Almighty God.
The parable of the lost sheep tells us volumes about the lengths to which our Lord will go to save just one soul. He speaks of leaving the ninety-nine other sheep to go after and pursue the one sheep that has strayed and wandered away. This means, of course, an all-out pursuit, a relentless and determined pursuit. The soul seeking to run away from God ultimately has no place to hide, as Jonah’s futile flight from God demonstrates:
“. . . Jonah rose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went on board, to go with them, away from the presence of the Lord. But the Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea” (Jonah 1:3-4).
Similarly, Psalm 139 attests:
“Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? / Or whither shall I flee from thy presence? / If I ascend to heave, thou art there! / If I make my bed in Sheol, thou art there! / If I take the wings of the morning / and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, / even there thy hand shall lead me, / and thy right hand shall hold me” (Psalm 139:7-10).
When we pray for the conversion of a fallen-away Catholic or a non-Catholic, we share in the Divine Shepherd’s hunt for that straying soul, not unlike the hounds that join a foxhunter in pursuit of the fox. But also in the context of the imitation of Christ to which we are all called, we imitate our Lord in going after a wayward soul with our prayers.
When we make up our minds to pray with determination and perseverance for the conversion of a sinner, we offer our supplication to our Lord at Mass and before the Tabernacle, but also invoke our Lady, the saints and the angels.
Our humble supplications are taken very seriously by Heaven, more seriously than we can imagine. It is as if we prayed with the Psalmist:
“Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered; / let those who hate him flee before him! Summon thy might, O God; / show thy strength, O God” (Psalm 68:128); “Arise, O God, plead thy cause” (Psalm 74:22).
If we had eyes that could penetrate the veil between time and eternity, we would see the whole court of Heaven mobilized to take up our cause. For the Good Shepherd is also a Warrior, prepared to do battle with Satan and to seize from his foul jaws the soul that our Lord is determined to save. The heavenly host joins Him in the battle:
“Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! He who sat upon it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. . . .He is clad in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. And the armies of Heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, followed him on white horses. . . . On his robe and on his thigh he has a name inscribed, King of kings and Lord of lords” (Rev. 20:11, 13-14, 16).
As we said above, our prayers can seem futile when dealing with a particularly hardened heart, an obstinate sinner or nonbeliever with an adamantine determination not to change his or her ways. The great Spanish Augustinian archbishop and preacher St. Thomas of Villanova (1486-1555) likens a hardened sinner to an impregnable “castle,” “fortified against God,” and “difficult to invade” (Sermon 2 for Palm Sunday, n. 6, in Michael Woodward, tr., and Fr. John Rotelle, OSA, The Works of Saint Thomas of Villanova: Sermons: Part 3: Lent, Augustinian Series, volume 20, Villanova, Pa., Augustinian Press, 1995, p. 463).
But there is no substance in the universe, nothing whatsoever, that Almighty God cannot penetrate. For He who is “the Alpha and the Omega” and who has “the keys of Death and Hades” (Rev. 1:8, 18) holds also the key to every man’s heart. No one and nothing can bar His entry. A great way to picture this can be borrowed from one of the movie adaptations of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, the 1984 production starring George C. Scott as Scrooge. Just before the ghost of Jacob Marley makes his appearance, Scrooge is frozen with terror as all the deadbolts and locks he has set upon the door to his room are quickly unlocked by an unseen hand.
The ultimate scriptural image of God storming the gates of a soul is provided by Psalm 24, a psalm that has inspired several liturgical rites which symbolically re-enact the dialogue it presents. Looking at this psalm within the particular context of the battle for souls, we see Christ coming to the portal of a hardened sinner’s heart with His heavenly army, demanding entry:
“Lift up your heads, O gates! / and be lifted up, O ancient doors! / that the King of glory may come in.
“Who is the King of glory? / The Lord, strong and mighty, / the Lord, mighty in battle! The Lord of hosts, / he is the King of glory!” (Psalm 24:7, 8, 10).
It is precisely within the context of the battle for souls that St. Thomas of Villanova interprets these words of the Psalmist, doing so in a homily delivered on Palm Sunday, when in Spain it was the custom to utilize the dialogue from this psalm for the moment when the celebrant in the procession of palms reached the closed door of the church and, knocking upon it with the processional cross, demanded entry in persona Christi:
“. . . however securely the castle of the soul is locked against the Redeemer through sins, however hard it resists, if the Lord knocks on the heart, if He touches the mind, if the voice of majesty sounds in the ears of the soul, then the iron chains are broken and the bonds loosened, and the soul goes out of sin through open doors to meet the Lord….The soul resists, but now the bridegroom has touched it, and it arises” (Sermon 2 for Palm Sunday, n. 10, in Woodward and Rotelle, Sermons: Part 3: Lent, p. 465).
Here St. Thomas of Villanova cites the fifth chapter of the Song of Songs: “Hark! my beloved is knocking. / ‘Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my perfect one; / for my head is wet with dew, / my locks with the drops of the night’. . . . My beloved put his hand to the latch, and my heart was thrilled within me” (Song 5:2, 4). For Christ’s hunt for fallen souls is really a love story, and the passion of His pursuit is driven by His love for sinners. In yet another passage from the Song of Songs cited by St. Thomas, we read:
“The voice of my beloved! / Behold, he comes, leaping upon the mountains, / bounding over the hills” (Song 2:8).
The classic poetic depiction of our Lord as the Divine Hunter in pursuit of sinners is Francis Thompson’s 1890 poem, The Hound of Heaven, which employs the metaphor of Christ as a bloodhound chasing the hardened soul with “unperturbed pace” and “deliberate speed,” and is deeply rooted in the scriptural images of divine love:
“Now of that long pursuit, / Comes on at hand the bruit; / That Voice is round me like a bursting sea: / “. . . Lo, all things fly thee, for thou fliest Me! . . . / Whom wilt thou find to love ignoble thee / Save Me, save only Me? / All which I took from thee I did but take, / Not for thy harms, / But just that thou might’st seek it in My arms / All which thy child’s mistake / Fancies as lost, I have stored for thee at home: / Rise, clasp my hand, and come!” (The Hound of Heaven, in Selected Poems of Francis Thompson, London, Burns, Oates & Washbourne, 1923, pp. 51, 56).

Pardon And Peace

St. Thomas of Villanova also speaks of the role of priests in the battle to win the “castle” of the hardened sinner’s soul with “paternal discretion, prudent counsel, and careful effort.” And in the case of weak souls, the priest should be prepared to follow the example of Christ as the Good Shepherd and carry the soul on his shoulders back to our Lord (Sermon 2 for Palm Sunday, n. 7, in Woodward and Rotelle, Sermons: Part 3: Lent, p. 464).
In his book addressed to penitents, Pardon and Peace, Fr. Alfred Wilson, CP, assures the penitent who is worried about how the priest might react to his Confession that there is scarcely anything that can gladden the heart of a priest more than the return of such a prodigal son or daughter to God:
“The priest spends his life searching for the lost sheep. . . . Your humble confession will be a source of joy to him. . . . Every ‘fisher of men’ is pleased when he lands a big fish. The worse you have been, the greater will be the consolation of the priest” (Pardon and Peace, New York, Sheed and Ward, 1947, p. 50).
In this great labor of seeking lost sheep, we can assist the priests with our prayers, but also with our words of counsel to wandering souls, as the holy Redemptorist brother St. Gerard Majella (1726-1755) did, described by a priest who knew him personally as “a hunter of souls, a hunter who had his eye always fixed on some prey for Jesus Christ” (Fr. Tannoia, quoted in Fr. Edward Saint-Omer, CSSR, The Wonder-Worker of Our Days: Life, Virtues and Miracles of St. Gerard Majella, Boston, Mission Church, 1907, p. 128).
Let us hope and pray for the glorious day when we and those whom we have brought back to God shall rejoice together in Heaven.

A Beacon Of Light… A New March For Life

January 31, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on A Beacon Of Light… A New March For Life

By FR. RICHARD D. BRETON JR.

(Editor’s Note: Fr. Richard D. Breton Jr. is a priest of the Diocese of Norwich, Conn. He received his BA in religious studies and his MA in dogmatic theology from Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Cromwell, Conn.)

  • + + On January 20, 2023, the yearly March for Life looked and felt different. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade decision that had legalized abortion in the nation. In fact, in his homily for the Opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life, His Excellency, the Most Rev. Michael F. Burbidge, bishop of Alexandria, Va., applauded the court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
    He also reminded us that our job as pro-lifers is not complete, but is just the beginning. The road ahead isn’t easy. The contribution of every Catholic — bishops, priest, religious, and the laity — is needed as we move forward. The future involves teaching how precious life is, but especially that of the innocent child in the womb. As a Church we need to be visible in assisting those who are struggling with unplanned or difficult pregnancies. We do this through welcoming expectant mothers and offering to help them with their needs. The Church has so many resources to assist single pregnant mothers to have their babies.
    In another way, the March for Life had a mysterious feel this year. This was because there was the presence of the Catholic Templars Today, also known as Templars Today. These men and women donned themselves in cloaks of white or black all adorned with a red cross. The significance of the white cloak was to symbolize the knight’s purity of thought and faith, chastity of thought and deeds, and the necessity to fight for holy causes. The red cross on their cloaks is a sign of martyrdom, the ultimate sacrifice of giving one’s life for the faith.
    At the Mass they positioned themselves along the columns of the side aisles and stood there for the entire Mass protecting the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, the bishop, priests, and faithful, but, more important, the Eucharist.
    History has shown there was such a group called Knights Templar. These knights lived around the thirteenth century during the time of the Crusades. They were considered a monastic order of knights who were called upon to protect the pilgrims journeying to Jerusalem and other holy places. The Knights Templar were also protectors of the ancient holy churches. They fought off the desecration and destruction of these holy places.
    There is a book by Barbara Frale entitled: The Templars: The Secret History Revealed. Her book addresses the history and authenticity of the Templars Today through her study of the ancient Chinon Parchment which describes the importance the image of the Shroud of Turin has in the life of the Templars. Basically, Templars are called to see the face of Christ in the poor and oppressed.
    The ancient times in which the Templars lived and fought, is not very different than today. We live in a time where the faith needs protection from the onslaught of the power of relativism. The faith needs to be protected today just as it was in the Middle Ages. As the Templars of old protected the pilgrims on their journey to the Holy Land and other religious sites, so too, the Templars Today have the responsibility of protecting us, the faithful, on our journey to the Eternal Jerusalem.
    Today, however, the enemy is not as easily seen as an army attacking pilgrims or a sacred holy site, but the threat is still real. The fight exists within the culture that has removed anything Godlike. There is a battle raging that is trying to destroy the faith. We see this in the many desecrations that occur so frequently around us. It may be the destruction of a statue, a cemetery, or the graffiti written on a church building. The battle between good and evil has even entered our schools where after-school activities now include satanic groups. Yes, that is correct! School districts in our country allow satanic groups to meet and indoctrinate our children in these most evil ways. We need a way to fight this onslaught of evil in our times.
    The presence of the Catholic Templars in today’s society is one way we can come together and fight to defend the Church and our faith. The Templars Today, have as their vision, the safety of Mass-goers, the protection of church buildings and other sacred sites. In addition, they also stand guard before our Eucharistic Lord, and vow to protect Him at all costs. Their ministry is one of presence, protection, and welcome. They can usually be seen standing outside on each side of the church doors. Then, when entering the church they process two by two down the main aisle and salute the Eucharistic Lord by placing their hand over their heart. Then they take up their positions along the front of the sanctuary or down the side aisles of the church.
    I had the honor to gather with the Catholic Templars in Washington, D.C., at the March for Life for their retreat. While the Templars Today are mostly found in Italy, there is a growing number of people in the United States who are interested in this lay association of the faithful.
    Currently there are about 55 Templars in the United States who are dedicating themselves to this way of spiritual living. There were 18 who attended the March, of whom four came from Italy representing the Grand Master of the Templars. They live a simple spiritual life and promise to fast weekly, and promise to eat meat not more than three times per week and to always be ready to give their life for the faith. These actions of mortification are a means for them to offer sacrifice to the Lord. It is a visible sign that there are those fighting against the onslaught of religious persecution in our time.
    When a person wishes to enter the Temple, they must pass through a series of levels. First the candidates are welcomed and become novices. This period can last between anywhere from three months to three years. After a time as a novice, one becomes an armiger, or squire. This period of armiger lasts until the candidate feels ready to proceed forward to becoming a knight. The next level after armiger is miles, or knight. This level of becoming a knight of the temple is the last promotion a person can acquire themselves. There is another level, however, but it is bestowed on the Knight Templar for acts of service that go beyond the call of duty. This level is called Equis and its bestowal is based on one’s performance and dedication to the temple. The Equis honor is bestowed by the Grand Master of the Temple or another high-ranking temple member.

The Night Watch

One of the most moving aspects of the Templar spirituality is their love and devotion to the Eucharist. When you are promoted to a higher rank you must stand before the Eucharistic Lord in adoration. This is called the night watch. The night watch consists of either three or six hours standing during the night in total adoration. It is fascinating to see men and woman standing in the middle of the night just looking at Jesus.
You see, for them, this is so important because it is here they receive their strength. Many have spoken of spiritual experiences they had while doing the night watch. Each person experiences this night watch in their own way. Some have seen the flashing of light; others have felt like they were being eaten by mosquitos. Whatever their experience, it prepares them for whatever the Lord calls them to do as Templars. For us they are examples of how to submit ourselves to the Lord.
The motto of the Templars Today is: Non nobis, Domine, non nobis, sed Nomini tuo da gloriam. This is translated in English as: Not for us, My Lord, not for us, but to your name give the glory. This should be the motto of every one of the faithful because everything we do is only for the glory of God.
May we, like the Templars, defend the Church and the Eucharist with our lives!

Anticipating Vote In Minnesota State Senate . . . Thousands Join MCCL March For Life After Devastating House Vote

January 30, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on Anticipating Vote In Minnesota State Senate . . . Thousands Join MCCL March For Life After Devastating House Vote

By PEGGY MOEN

ST. PAUL — On the 50th anniversary of the legalization of abortion, thousands of pro-life Minnesotans came to the state Capitol to commemorate the enormous harm of abortion and to call on elected officials to reject current bills that would enshrine abortion-until-birth in Minnesota law.
This annual MCCL March for Life took place shortly after the House narrowly approved the extreme Protect Reproductive Options (PRO) Act; the Minnesota Senate was expected to vote on it Friday, January 27, one day after The Wanderer went to press this week.
The day was sunny and cold, offering far better conditions than Minnesotans marching for life have often endured in the half-century since the U.S. Supreme Court handed down Roe v. Wade. Many of the marchers have come to nearly all the rallies, including Roger and Rosalind Zarembinski of White Bear Lake. Roger carried a large and colorful sign showing an infant and saying, “That’s my baby. I’ll love you forever.” Near where Rosalind and Roger stood was an empty baby carriage with a sign declaring, “No abortions in Minnesota.”
Another marcher carried a sign that declared: “Fear God. Don’t Murder Babies.” Many of the pro-life protesters carried red and white signs affirming: “No Abortions Up to Birth.”
At noon on January 22, MCCL President Scott Fischbach welcomed the crowd.
Fr. Chad VanHoose of St. Jude of the Lake, Mahtomedi, Minn., offered the invocation for the rally: “We ask Him for a miraculous intervention,” he told the marchers, to change the hearts of pro-abortion Gov. Tim Walz and the like-minded state legislators.
“Lord, make haste to help us.”
“Babies in Minnesota receive no protection in their mother’s wombs,” MCCL Co-Executive Director Cathy Blaeser then told the large and diverse crowd, hailing from all corners of the state. “But that’s not enough for Gov. Walz and pro-abortion legislators. Now they want to enshrine into our Minnesota laws a complete and unfettered right to abort any baby at any time, right up to the moment of birth.”
Speakers noted that 12 states are now — following the Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson decision — abortion free.
Earlier, at the time of the Minnesota House vote, Blaeser stated: “Let’s be clear: The PRO Act would mean it’s legal for any baby to be aborted, for any reason and at any time up to birth. The absolutist extremism of this bill would put Minnesota in the company of just a handful of countries worldwide, among them China and North Korea. Mothers and babies deserve a far more humane and compassionate approach.”
Elective abortion has been legal in Minnesota since the U.S. Supreme Court’s January 22, 1973, Roe v. Wade decision struck down laws protecting unborn children nationwide. Although the Court’s Dobbs ruling now allows states to decide their own abortion laws, the Minnesota Supreme Court’s Doe v. Gomez decision continues to require a policy of abortion-on-demand in Minnesota.
Pro-aborts at the Capitol are advancing multiple bills to entrench and expand abortion in state law. The above-mentioned PRO Act (H.F. 1/S.F. 1), would create a “fundamental right” to abortion, even late in pregnancy, when unborn children are developed enough to feel excruciating pain and when the risks of abortion to women increase.
A separate bill, H.F. 91/S.F. 70, would repeal numerous longstanding abortion-related laws in Minnesota, including a law protecting newborns who survive abortion from being left to die.
In 2021, according to the Minnesota Department of Health, five abortions resulted in a born-alive infant. In that same year, 10,136 abortions took place in Minnesota, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. Almost 700,000 have taken place since Roe.
Notably, Pew Research on October 25, 2022 posted an article titled “Minnesota Has Become an Island of Abortion Access.”
Another speaker at this year’s MCCL rally was Alyssa Bormes, who bravely shared her story of rape, abortion, and regret. She recalled how abortionists had assured her that relief would follow the procedure, but that relief was fleeting, and she realized: “I killed my babies.”
Ultimately, she confessed her sins to a priest with ties to MCCL, and then: “Healing flooded my soul.”
Other notables in attendance included Cong. Brad Finstad and Cong. Michelle Fischbach. Congressmen Tom Emmer and Pete Stauber sent greetings. Many state lawmakers were in attendance and were introduced to the crowd by Don Parker, MCCL co-execution director. Jon Olson served as the vocalist.
Pro-life Minnesotans were anxiously awaiting the Minnesota Senate vote on Friday, January 26, as this article was written and published.

Illegal Or Not

January 29, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on Illegal Or Not

By BARBARA SIMPSON

The latest figures from the feds regarding the number of illegals crossing our Southern border are astonishing — 66,000 in February alone. That is the highest number in the month of February in eleven years – it’s the highest number in any month in ten years.
The astonishing fact is that these people are not coming from Mexico, they’re coming through Mexico, and they’re coming here from a long list of countries, literally across the world. Not surprisingly, many do come from Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, but thousands more are from other Central and South American countries as well as from Cuba and other Caribbean countries in addition to people from Europe, Asia, and former “Iron Curtain” nations.
What this mix of nationalities — here illegally — will do to the population of the United States remains to be seen, but there is no doubt, it will have a major impact.
One issue that is critical is: What is the attitude of American politicians as to how these people should be treated? Should they be gathered together and deported? Should they be allowed to stay here as they are now, just “illegal”? Should we change our immigration laws concerning their status? Who is going to decide and what role do our political parties play in the final decision?
I have no doubt that it will not be accomplished quietly, and it promises to be quite a battle.
Bus and plane loads of illegals have been sent by governors to northern states from border states — the idea that the northerners should share the burden of dealing with the illegals.
New York City has received more than 40,000 asylum seekers this way, and at this point, the mayor is pleading with President Biden to distribute these people across all cities and towns across the country. Mayor Eric Adams says his city has reached its limit. He’s quoted as saying he’d like a national response to the problem — everything from arrival procedures to an ultimate pathway to citizenship.
No word from Washington about the request, but it is clear that the administration is setting up new programs to bring even more illegals to the states. As Breitbart News reported, it’s estimated Biden will set another illegal immigration record this year with 2.6 million border crossers and illegal aliens being apprehended. This number doesn’t include those who sneaked in without being accounted for.
The president isn’t the only politician dealing with illegals — state governors are involved as well. Take California Gov. Gavin Newsom, for example. His state is a “sanctuary state” and there’s a new law there that allows new border crossers to get jobs as law enforcement officers with varied government agencies.
Newsom signed SB 960 which allows people with only a work permit to be law enforcement officers. There is no citizenship or residency requirement under the new law. All they need is to be here with a presidential work permit and the job is theirs!
As for other politicians — how about New York Sen. Charles Schumer? The Democrat is all for full amnesty, full citizenship for all illegals. He doesn’t call them that — he calls for “citizenship for all undocumented” and he is aiming to get Republican support for his idea. He has been quoted as saying that if he can get that support, the idea will be implemented by the end of this year.
He called the idea the “smart thing to do — the right thing to do — the moral thing to do — the humane thing to do.” He said that “we will not stop fighting till we get a fix for DACA, a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers and a pathway to citizenship for all undocumented.”
DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, was instituted by President Barack Obama in 2012 to cover illegals who arrived as minors. It covers about 800,000 people and is currently tied up in litigation.
As if we didn’t have enough problems with illegals crossing the southern border, the Department of Homeland Security is extending temporary amnesty to thousands of Somali nationals living here who are otherwise eligible for deportation.
Last week, DHS secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced that the Biden administration is extending and redesignating Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for the more than 2,600 Somali nationals living and working in the U.S.
It would directly affect 430 Somalis who already are here and allows another 2,200 to join them.
There is concern that the announcement will encourage another surge of illegals at the border. For example, in May of 2021, President Biden awarded TPS to more than 100,000 Haitians living here who otherwise would have been deported.
Since then, tens of thousands of Haitian border crosser arrive at the U.S. Mexico border on a monthly basis — all looking for increased TPS and the ability to remain in this country and work.
An interesting and discouraging aspect of the immigration situation is that every one of the illegals is supposed to be able to get a court date to determine if and when they might be allowed to remain the U.S. permanently and legally.
Point of interest: The backlog of cases in U.S. Immigration Courts stands at 2,023,441!!

Forward March!

January 28, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on Forward March!

By CHRISTOPHER MANION

Arlington Bishop Michael Burbidge, chairman of the Pro-Life Committee of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), presided at the USCCB’s Mass for pro-life leaders the day before a hundred thousand joyous pro-lifers filled the streets of Washington to join in the Fiftieth Annual March for Life.
“There is much to celebrate,” Bishop Burbidge said, “there is much to be grateful for. After decades of marching alongside our fellow Americans and our fellow Catholics, of praying for an end to the grievous miscarriage of justice that took place in Roe v. Wade, of gathering before the Supreme Court in protest, we can finally say that Roe is no more.”
Since 1974, generations of pro-lifers had marched, determined to bring abortion in America to an end. Reversing the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade was priority number one.
It took 49 years, but last June the Court handed down the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision. Our goal had been achieved, and we had every right to celebrate.
And celebrate we did.
Early on the day of the March, pro-life leaders welcomed former Vice-President Mike Pence and several Members of Congress, thanking them for their historic roles in the battle for life.
“I prefer short introductions,” said Mr. Pence. “I’m Mike Pence, and I’m pro-life.”
“Today will be a day of celebration,” said President Trump’s vice-president in what was clearly the most pro-life administration in American history. “But it’s also a day of gratitude,” and he took time to thank the efforts of those diehard pro-lifers he had served with, especially his former colleagues in Congress, many of whom were in the room.
Among those colleagues was Cong. Chris Smith, co-chair of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus.
Cong. Smith has been a leader in every one of the 43 years he’s been in Congress, and Pence dubbed him the “Lion for Life” in the U.S. Congress.
Smith returned the compliment, crediting the vice-president with several victories, including helping President Trump push the expansion of the Mexico City policy across the finish line, a life-saving achievement that the George W. Bush Administration had failed to accomplish.

Taking The Next Step

The March for Life was founded in 1973 by Nellie Gray, a truly valiant leader. Jeanne Mancini, who has led the March since Nellie’s death in 2012, surprised us all by noting a strange coincidence: The Dobbs decision was handed down on Nellie Gray’s 99th birthday, June 24!
What a birthday present!
“When we stood here last year, folks, we thought, we hoped, we prayed, but I don’t think any of us really knew in our heart of hearts that we would be here this year, and that Roe v. Wade will be overturned,” Mancini said.
“And so, today is a time to celebrate this momentous occasion, and to continue to think about what’s next.”
“What’s next” was on everyone’s mind on this momentous day, and Bishop Burbidge had emphasized it: “Through God’s grace and hard work, the question of abortion has again been placed in the hands of legislators and the citizens who elect them,” he said. “Our success moving forward will depend on our ability to persuade them of the justness of our cause. We must learn new and compelling ways to communicate the reality of abortion and the damage it inflicts on children, mothers, fathers, and society more broadly.”
“At the same time, we must support efforts to build a broader culture of life — through government, to be sure, but also in civil society,” he said.
That’s a steep mountain to climb, and it’s gotten even steeper with every passing year.
America has become increasingly secular since Roe v. Wade, to the point where its reversal generated outrage among the godless. The phrase, “a woman’s right to choose,” has been drilled into three generations. Thanks to the secular Culture of Death, “civil society” has become more uncivil with each passing year.
It is not surprising that, following the Dobbs decision, the Left erupted in violence. In fact, since last June, pro-abortion terrorists have attacked over 200 hundred pregnancy centers, churches, and pro-life offices.
(James Varney writes that, since DOJ/FBI won’t pursue and arrest terrorists who firebomb pregnancy centers, pro-lifers have had to hire their own investigators. Of course, they can’t smash down doors and make arrests. Another sad example of Attorney General Garland’s “justice.”)
Bishop Burbidge is correct in insisting that the task of rebuilding a culture of life is paramount, and that is clearly our task as we enter the next stage of the battle.
In her remarks on Friday morning, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch, who brought the Dobbs case before the Supreme Court, began by saying, “the Dobbs case was chosen by God,” she said. “There’s no question about it.
“And everybody played a part in getting the Dobbs case in front of the United States Supreme Court,” she continued. “Everyone across our country, all the believers, who again, looked for the moment, prayed for the moment. And we all made it happen together. . . . So when we filed our brief, we asked the hard question — overturn Roe v. Wade — and the Justices did so. We all overturned Roe v. Wade! Congratulations!”

But What Happens Next?

“The pro-life movement has always been compassionate, loving, caring for our women, for our children,” she said. “We have to be there, as we have been there for the past for 50 years, and be compassionate and caring for these women who need our support. They need our love, and they need our care….We definitely must be supporting our pregnancy resource centers. This is so key to our women, to our children, to these mothers who move into motherhood, to know that we’re there for them.”
The viciousness of the Left’s attack on our crisis pregnancy centers underscores the importance of Fitch’s remarks. That kind of violence is being unleashed against us for one reason: Those centers are saving moms and babies from the horrors of abortion.
The final speaker was Chris Smith, who underscored the challenge we now face. “We have a fight like we’ve never had before,” Smith said. “[The defense of life] is finally now in the court of lawmakers at the local, state and federal level. And I hope all of us will push back hard…to make laws to protect life.”
“In our elections stand up for life,” Smith said. “But when you’re attacked on the life issue, be bold — kind and civil — bold. And when you do that, you win.”
It worked for Chris Smith. Representing a Democrat district for over 40 years, he continually won — by large margins — by being bold and stalwart. Ever since Cong. Henry Hyde left the Congress in 2006, Smith has indeed been the lead “Lion for Life” on Capitol Hill.
In finishing his remarks, Vice-President Pence invoked the words of Thomas Jefferson that appear on Washington’s Jefferson Memorial.
“God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.”
“Jefferson’s words should serve as an admonition to each one of us to steel our resolve and our determination,” he said.
So we have our marching orders — to carry the fight to the fifty States until America is finally free of the scourge of abortion.
Forward, March!

A Fight Between Sense And Insanity . . . Pro-lifers Love The U.S. Despite The Evils Done In Its Name

January 27, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on A Fight Between Sense And Insanity . . . Pro-lifers Love The U.S. Despite The Evils Done In Its Name

By DEXTER DUGGAN

Why do people choose a certain path in life, whether political, religious, occupational or otherwise? Why do some see patriotism as admirable while others see it as constricting and tribalist?
Why do some seek God’s own revealed truth in religion, while others think it’s up to them to construct whatever makes them feel good and think that God is subject to their feelings?
Other people may fall somewhere in between these in their attitudes, but political conservatives and political liberals don’t see the world with the same gaze.
An example occurred at the pro-life presentation given January 13 by the nationally known Defend Life activist organization in Bethesda, Md., that featured remarks by Frank Pavone, the pro-life longtime internationally activist priest who was surprised to learn in December that he was laicized the previous month by some authority in the Vatican.
Also speaking in Bethesda was Michael Hichborn, president of the Lepanto Institute (lepantoin.org), which is prominent in investigating misuse of funds by Catholic organizations including the U.S. Catholic bishops’ Catholic Campaign for Human Development when the money is given to organizations that oppose core Catholic moral teaching.
For more than two hours Pavone and Hichborn spoke in separate talks about widespread, serious immoral activity under the aegis of the U.S. government and Catholic agencies.
Following this, pro-life activist Anna Little closed the program by singing God Bless America.
After the audience had listened to numerous facts that might make a person reject the U.S.A. as unworthy of any affection or loyalty, Little reflected their gratitude to be Americans and sang out to bless this nation.
On the other hand, when U.S. leftists for decades often were given what they demanded from politicians and the courts, no matter how reprehensible, like massive permissive abortion, they still condemned this nation as retrogressive, racist, and in need of total transformation toward some sort of globalist or Marxist society.
What qualities within different people make one choose a certain path, and the other select a very different one?
Whatever the reasons, some people observed that the strongly pro-life Pavone being laicized and thereby forbidden to function as a priest was very different treatment than that which clergy who might be considered open heretics and outright dissenters received from Rome.
LifeSiteNews.com posted on January 10 that it had an interview with Gerhard Cardinal Mueller, the former head of the Church’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, whom it quoted: “There are other prominent persons in the United States and other countries who are denying openly the basics of the Catholic faith and morals, and they [face] no reactions from the side of the ecclesiastical authority.”
The news service said Mueller said, “I think there was truly a lot of pressure [from] the Democratic Party” and champions of permissive abortion against Pavone, who had been a campaign adviser of pro-life former President Donald Trump.
In his January 13 Maryland talk, Pavone said he was asked to speak about his work of the last 30 years by Jack Ames, founder and director of the Baltimore-based Defend Life (www.DefendLife.org). Pavone said that during that time, the battle expanded to include other elements like transgenderism.
It’s a fight “between common sense and insanity,” said Pavone, who continues as national director of Priests for Life, which is based in Florida.
He said that in 1973, when the U.S. Supreme Court issued its Roe v. Wade opinion legalizing permissive abortion nationwide, “of course we knew” the child in the womb is a human being, but pretended otherwise.
Saying today that “a man is not a man” because of transgenderism is simply the logical outgrowth of the fiction of the acceptability of abortion, Pavone said.
He talked of how he was led into fighting to defend preborn babies and into the priesthood.
As a high school student he attended the third annual national March for Life in Washington, D.C., in 1976, which launched his vocation, Pavone said, adding that his involvement in the pro-life movement and development as a priest were integral.
He was ordained for the Archdiocese of New York and loved every moment of parish life, including doing marriages and funerals, Pavone said, although some priests groused about performing these ceremonies.
“It was the wake services which were really memorable,” Pavone said, describing how he’d attend these gatherings and circulate the word that people could come see him in another room at the mortuary so they could go to Confession and properly prepare themselves to receive the Eucharist the next day at the funeral.
“Lots of people” would come to the room for penance after word circulated that he was a nice guy, he said.
After four to four-and-a-half years, Pavone said he came to a point “when you know what’s next,” so he asked New York’s John Cardinal O’Connor for permission to do pro-life work full-time as his ministry, which Pavone said O’Connor granted.
“I wanted to get on the road” and visit every national pro-life leader in order to ask “how can we help you,” Pavone said, even though he had little to work with financially.
Pavone’s later problems with other prelates appear to stem from their disagreement with this sort of full-time ministry, and Pavone’s strong belief this is the only proper assignment for him.
He said he introduced former militant national pro-abortion leader and practicing abortionist Bernard Nathanson, MD, for a 1994 talk on chemical abortion, but Nathanson, who still was an agnostic after having been an atheist, told the audience he wanted to talk about his spiritual journey.
Pavone told the January 13 Maryland audience that Nathanson said the love he saw among pro-lifers, including pro-life rescuers at abortion clinics, had cracked his shell, adding, “I stand before you today on the brink of conversion.”
Two years later, Pavone said, O’Connor baptized Nathanson into the Catholic Church.
Pavone described forming friendships of a sort with militant abortion leaders like Martin Haskell, MD, who had given the first detailed description of performing partial-birth abortions to a convention of abortionists.
When Pavone asked how Haskell could do such abortions, he replied, “I don’t know when the baby receives a soul.” The priest said he responded the fact is that the baby has a body.
One illustration Pavone provided showed the difference between pro-life and pro-abortion activists.
Radical pro-abortion pioneer Bill Baird attended many pro-life conferences, Pavone said, both demonstrating against them outside the venue and coming inside to listen to the talks.
So, Pavone said, he asked Baird if he could attend one of Baird’s events, but Baird replied, “Frank, I don’t think I could guarantee your safety.”
Pavone said that thanks to “credible threats” against him, “To this day, I have federal protection.”
In 2003, on the 30th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, someone said the pro-life movement needed something more, so the “Silent No More” organization of women who publicly regretted their abortions was founded, Pavone said, enabling them to arise from their despair and find healing and forgiveness with Jesus.
He said he could go on and on about his work, including time spent in Rome with Pope John Paul II, and also working with Mother Teresa — both of whom later were canonized as saints.
John Paul II palpably understood the importance of the pro-life movement, for whom his 1995 encyclical Evangelium Vitae was “a Magna Carta,” Pavone said.
“To be pro-life politically is a winning issue,” Pavone said, describing pro-life as “the greatest human-rights cause, not only of our time” but of all time.
Taking audience questions after his talk, Pavone was asked about the laicization. “Not much changes, believe it or not,” he said, because a lot of his work wasn’t sacramental ministry although that was important.
“I’ve gotten offers to become bishops in other denominations,” he said, but he’s staying with the Catholic Church.
He didn’t rule out the possibility of returning to the priesthood, saying, “If this Pope doesn’t do it, what comes after him.”
He could run for political office but has no plans to do so, Pavone said, adding that his current work is “all-consuming.”
Pavone said he doesn’t know if the person responsible for laicizing him understood the full implications because Priests for Life assists the Holy Father’s mission to the United Nations. “This is the largest pro-life organization in the Catholic Church.”
He mentioned a recent National Public Radio presentation of a woman having an abortion that regarded abortion as “a big eraser, a magic wand” to make the pregnancy cease to exist. However, Pavone said, NPR said nothing about the necessary task of disposing of the baby’s body parts.
An abortionist said that in a suction abortion, the baby’s heart can be seen still beating as it goes through the suction tube and into the collection jar for up to a minute, Pavone said.
Pavone didn’t say this, but I will: Maybe the smirking dunce of a bad Catholic named Joe Biden would like to hold some of these baby hearts destroyed by the trauma of dismemberment and tell the nation how proud he is of his depravity.

The Salvation Of Souls

The evening’s other speaker, the Lepanto Institute’s Michael Hichborn, cited the Bible on the qualities a good bishop should have — not merely not being a criminal, but also not having such characteristics as pride and impiety.
What of the steward, Hichborn asked, who not only squanders the funds entrusted to him but also gives them to the king’s enemies?
One such example, he said, is the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD), which he has investigated since 2009 and which has given money to organizations promoting abortion, contraception, Marxism and homosexuality.
The Lepanto Institute’s website says: “The Lepanto Institute was created to present the facts regarding organizations that claim the name Catholic or even Christian, but are acting in opposition to the teachings of our Blessed Lord and His Holy and Immaculate Church.
“Sadly,” the site says, “organizations like Catholic Relief Services, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, the Catholic Health Association and many others are giving aid and comfort to the enemies of Christ.
“Even worse,” it continues, “dissident and apostate Catholics in politics and other prominent arenas are giving a false witness to the faith by claiming to be Catholic while promoting abortion, contraception, and homosexuality. As a remedy to this grave situation, the purpose of the Lepanto Institute is to encourage recourse to the Holy Rosary, particularly offered for bishops and priests, while presenting the facts on individuals and institutions such as these.”
The CCHD says it has a rigorous vetting process about who receives funds, Hichborn said, but it’s easy to discover negative information about the recipients.
The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals are Marxist, Hichborn said, but Pope Francis promotes this.
“God loves souls. He desires the salvation of souls,” Hichborn said, asking what about bishops who commit to worldly causes that have nothing to do with souls’ salvation?

In Deceptive World Of Politics . . . Are Biden, Hobbs Their Own Sorts Of Potemkin Villages?

January 26, 2023 Frontpage Comments Off on In Deceptive World Of Politics . . . Are Biden, Hobbs Their Own Sorts Of Potemkin Villages?

By DEXTER DUGGAN

PHOENIX — When Joe Biden went to a carefully sanitized city of El Paso on January 8 under the pretense that he actually was looking into border problems caused by the invasion, critics said this was his Potemkin village visit — a reference to a deceptively arranged situation to make it look better.
Well, how about thinking of Biden as his own sort of ongoing Potemkin village?
Goofy, harmless Grandpa Joe actually manages to remember most of the words in singing “Happy Birthday” — while his administration imposes the most depraved, evil policies ever widely inflicted on the United States, and beyond.
Easily confused, sleepy, cognitively impaired bad Catholic Joe isn’t even sure how to exit the stage — while his administration pushes massive, tax-paid permissive abortion, sexual disorientation, officially sanctioned left-wing racism, social censorship, medical assault on patients and loss of their livelihoods, anti-religious bigotry, just to name a few of his Democratic Party’s outrages.
Sort of like the shifty shell game to conceal the bean, befuddled Biden stumbles his way through his lightly scheduled day even as his puppet masters more or less do the work of Satan, while friendly Catholic prelates can’t find it in themselves to call Biden to account for daily performing and encouraging deadly mortal sin as the nation’s way of life.
Would you worry if a puppy skipped over to sniff your pants leg? Until the puppy amazingly pulled out a pistol and demanded all your cash? With Biden, the threat may appear similarly unlikely, until you discover you and your family’s entire way of life and belief system are coming under threat of federal indoctrination and even imprisonment.
Ten years ago, whoever would have thought such a rapid, thorough national change in politics, religion, and society generally was even possible, much less right on the doorstep?
Yet as it shockingly arrives, the establishment’s U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) and his GOP allies seemed all too ready to surrender, while they screamed out their opposition and insults against someone like Donald Trump daring to oppose degenerate Democratic leaders’ onslaught.
And if anyone still needed proof that conservative Republicans suffer a different standard of justice, they need only recall that last summer, not long before the midterm elections, Trump’s Florida residence was raided by the federal government at night, in the glare of flashing red lights and media hysteria, in a search for confidential documents from his presidency.
However, when documents that Biden wasn’t supposed to keep from the days of his vice presidency under Barack Obama began to be found only a few days before the 2022 midterms, this wasn’t reported at all until two months later, when voter outrage over the double standard for sleepy Joe would have been too late to affect the November elections anyway.
Nor was there the same political insistence that Biden strongly be held to account for this, and right away.
In his daily radio update for January 18, veteran right-tilting commentator Bill O’Reilly said he’s starting to feel a personal dislike for Biden that he never felt for any U.S. president he covered before. O’Reilly cited Biden posing as the savior of hapless blacks — although Biden didn’t compile such a civil-rights record during long decades of government work as a U.S. senator.
Meanwhile, conservatives waited hopefully to see how Republicans’ new although narrow majority in the U.S. House under Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) changed the shameful direction that had been set by previous Speaker and bad Catholic liberal Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.).

Lake Pursues Legal Challenge

Besides Biden, basement-dwelling Katie Hobbs was another Democrat who was slipped into office as the choice of the establishment, in this case as the officially declared new governor of Arizona after term-limited Republican Gov. Doug Ducey left office.
However, Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake continued to pursue her legal challenge to the November 8 election results after widespread suppression of Republican voters in populous Maricopa County.
The Arizona Sun Times posted on January 13 that the Arizona Court of Appeals scheduled conferencing on February 1 for Lake’s appeal after a Maricopa County Superior Court judge in late December dismissed the two counts that he agreed to hear of Lake’s total of ten counts.
The Sun Times said a Lake attorney “alleged that the ‘clear and convincing’ standard of evidence enforced by the [superior] court is ‘not the standard that the election-contest statute requires for misconduct’.”
It reported that the Lake campaign tweeted, “Do not underestimate @KariLake’s desire to get justice for the people of Arizona. It doesn’t matter how long it takes. She will see this through.”
In a separate Sun Times story, posted January 17, about a rumor that Lake is considering running for Kyrsten Sinema’s U.S. Senate seat in 2024, Lake’s gubernatorial campaign was quoted:
“Kari is hyper-focused on winning her court case as she is the duly elected governor and her election case proves that.
“Hundreds of thousands of invalid ballots were counted in Maricopa County alone,” the statement added, “more than 60 percent of Election Day voting centers were sabotaged, causing lines of four hours or more at some locations, the wrong ballot image was printed on Election Day ballots causing tabulators to jam and spit out ballots, 25K ballots were mysteriously added to the official vote count two days after the elections, and more than 100K ballots with rejected signatures were counted anyway.”
Some conservative media continued reporting on the November voting scandal here, including this article posted January 18 at The Federalist: “With 25,000 Mysterious Votes And Missing Documents, Maricopa’s 2022 Election Process Marked By Chaos And Uncertainty.”
However, some conservative-inclined writers thousands of miles from the Grand Canyon State seemed to be letting themselves get talked into minimizing this voter suppression.
Although Hobbs avoided commenting as much as possible during the 2022 campaign, she quickly started pushing the positions of her left-wing puppet masters after she was declared governor — including permissive abortion with tax dollars, a dangerously open border, and opposition to expanded educational choice that Ducey signed into law only last year.
In a separate Arizona Sun Times story posted January 17, GOP state Sen. T.J. Shope was reported as saying he and his GOP colleagues wouldn’t support Hobbs’ proposed state budget.
Shope was quoted: “My colleagues in the Senate GOP will not support this budget and its declaration of war on parents. We will not support taxpayer-funded scholarship programs for non-citizens. We will not support a repeal of the Border Strike Force at a time when the scourge of fentanyl plagues our people. We are united and we will hold the line for the Arizona we love.”
The Republican Party holds narrow majorities in both the state Senate and House.
The Sun Times also reported that Hobbs proposed taking $200,000 from a program for homeless pregnant mothers and giving “it to the Department of Health Services’ budget for ‘pregnancy services that are inclusive of all options and support personal choice’.”
In other words, the rabidly pro-abortion Hobbs wants to yank aid from homeless mothers and give it to abortionists.
The same news article said that Republican state Senate President Warren Peterson “said this budget would be dead on arrival and that it would be Republican legislators introducing a budget to help the state,” instead of trying to make Arizona into another California.
During his January 12 talk program on Phoenix-based KFYI (550 AM), conservative host James T. Harris said he thought Hobbs “should be legally, morally resisted at every turn.”
Harris was interviewing Phoenix elections attorney Tim LaSota, who said it was “totally unprecedented” for a governor to take dark money here to fund an inauguration, but Hobbs “hit up” donors with a request for $250,000 then wouldn’t reveal who they were.
By contrast, LaSota said, Hobbs’ immediate predecessor, Republican Ducey, limited individual donations to his inaugural to $25,000.
LaSota said he filed a public-records request for details on Hobbs’ pitch and wondered how much money might be left over for other purposes because, he said, how many $250,000 sums would be needed to pay for an Arizona inauguration?
The attorney was back on Harris’ program on January 18 with news that his public-records request at least persuaded Hobbs to release some information to Arizona political reporter Howard Fischer, who wrote that she raised nearly $1.5 million but spent only about $207,000 on the ceremony.
Now here’s a lesson on how the political game is played. And everyone wants to be in the winner’s circle.
Fischer wrote that Hobbs set up her inaugural fund under a section of the Internal Revenue Code that allows proceeds to be used for political purposes.
LaSota told Harris that Hobbs may plan to spend the large leftover to try to get more liberal Democrats elected to the state legislature in 2024 and take over the majority.
Both Fischer and Arizona Republic newspaper columnist Laurie Roberts noted the irony that the largest giver, Arizona Public Service ($250,000), donated significantly to Arizona Republicans in the recent election cycle, so perhaps this major utility company was seeking to get into Hobbs’ good graces now.
Roberts also noted that while Arizona Public Service had so much for these political donations, it also is seeking to boost its customers’ bills by around $38 a month.
She posted on January 18: “Just how badly does APS need more money from its customers if it can afford to fritter away $1 million to boost its political standing with the governor and not-governor of the state? And the hundreds of thousands more it spends on lobbying and other political activities, to remain in the good graces of the power set?”

Wild Voting

Finally, with election integrity a top concern of local Republicans, the annual meeting of Maricopa County GOP precinct committeemen was held January 14 at Phoenix’s Dream City Church.
The January 16 issue of the unofficial Maricopa County “Republican Briefs” blog said an attendee reported that the gathering “was rough. It was 12.5 hours in the building from start to finish. The meeting was 10 hours.”
The blog added: “Attendees report disruptions caused the meeting to run over at least an hour and a half, resulting in many PCs [precinct committeemen] leaving prior to the second ballot.”
Conservative Republican political consultant Constantin Querard told The Wanderer on January 18: “The debate over hand counting versus machine counting consumed the entire morning and seemed largely driven by some folks who just object to any machine doing any part of the process, which misses the mark if your concern is how to use the good of machines (speed and accuracy) while addressing their vulnerability (coding, insufficient auditing, etc.).
“They just didn’t want any machines in the name of election integrity,” Querard said. “The crazy part is how they ran the vote counting to decide that motion — when it was time to vote Yay or Nay, you just held up however many fingers representing however many votes (including proxies) you had. No one checked to see if the number was right, so anyone could hold up three or four fingers if they wanted.
“Then one person counted fingers and wrote numbers down before turning them in, but none of us voting had any idea if the number was accurate,” he said. “And this was all done because the same folks who didn’t trust machines somehow had complete trust in human beings. So it was all pretty wild.”

Twitter Feed

House Republicans approved 2 #ProLife measures.

The first measure would ban #Abortion on babies born alive and require the babies be given medical care and treatment. The other measure condemned a spurt of growing attacks against crisis pregnancy centers.

House Republicans Pass Pro-Life Bills

House Republicans on Jan. 11 approved two pro-life measures. The first measure passed by the House would ban abortion ...

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Catechism

Today . . .

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