Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Missionary Adventures in Texas and Mexico

I have been reading an ebook: "Missionary Adventures in Texas and Mexico" By Emmanuel Domenech. Written in the 1850's it is by a Catholic Missionary serving in the Texas Frontier. This book is special to me, because this man was almost certainly known by my Great-Great Grandfather. This passage is one of my favorites.

The tender piety of our people, the poverty of our little church, the simplicity of our ceremonies, frequently touched my heart ; and many a time, while I held in my hands our only ostensory of plain wood, which contained the most sacred Host, tears of joy fell from my eyes. Ah ! in the noble cathedrals of France, how full of splendour is religion in the external pomp of her ceremonial. Gold and silver, and thousands of lights, dazzle the eye, and speak to the imagination ; here, on the contrary, everything speaks to the heart, and transports it burning with love to the throne of God. Every Sunday, at ten o'clock, was celebrated the adorable sacrifice of the mass. The music was very good. We had organised a choir, which succeeded beyond our expectation. At three o'clock the faithful, assembled to say the rosary. This exercise was followed by vespers and the benediction of the most Blessed Sacrament. The paschal solemnity of 1849 was truly consoling to us. All the Catholics of Castroville, with very few exceptions, approached the holy table. I had resolved that our little chapel should be decked out and wear quite a festive air for this solemnity, so I commenced its decoration the previous evening, and borrowed all the shawls and pieces of finery, and candlesticks, to be found in Castroville, even procured two small doors to construct lateral altars. The muslin curtains and shawls served as tapestry. I turned wooden vases in a lathe, and gilded them. In these I placed flowers of every hue and size, which I had gathered in the woods and open country. All this magnificence filled the colonists with astonishment. Next day the Catholics of the town, and of the surrounding country, assisted at the celebration of the Divine Mysteries, with feelings of profound reverence, on bended knees, bareheaded, and regardless of the burning sun, which darted its rays upon them. Poor isolated congregation !

How lively, sincere, touching, was this piety on that day ! The Almighty must have looked down with complacency on the little corner of earth where thou offered up thy prayers ! How favourably did thy piety contrast with the wavering, lukewarm piety of the city population of Europe ! In deserts and solitude, the blessings of religion are so much the more fully appreciated, as they are rarely accorded. Human institutions, for the protection of life and property, either do not exist, or are, at best, very inefficient. Man seems placed more immediately under the immediate protection of his Creator, and hence it comes that he raises his eyes and heart unto Him with greater facility and truth.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Eric Jon Phelps lying again.

I am usually very slow to accuse someone of lying, but when the lying is obvious, it needs to be pointed out. On his website "Vatican Assassins" Eric states that his ridiculous book can be ordered through LOWVEHM, Inc. A company that "holds the copyright to the book and has no legal connection with the author" But, that is not what LOWVEHM's website states where it lists: "Eric Jon Phelps, Vice President, Lowvehm, Inc." Sorry Mr. Phelps but being Vice President of a Corporation, makes you legally connected to it.

And, some quick little research shows LOVEHM, to be legally incorporated in Pennsylvania. So, Mr. Phelps who often decries corporations, owns one himself. Hypocrisy.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Larson for Congress

Although Ciro Rodriguez is reported to be Catholic. His 100% approval rating from NARAL, makes me one Catholic who cannot support him. So, if you live in the 23rd Congressional district of Texas, please support Lyle Larson.

My problems with "Alberto" by Chick publications.

All too often people accuse Catholics of attacking Alberto's background, but not what he says, well, I try to address that here, hope you like it.

Alberto could not speak latin, impossible for someone who attended a seminary prior to Vatican II

Children are not placed into seminaries and certainly do not become priests at young ages (Alberto claims we went to a seminary when he was seven years old). Also interesting that Alberto never identifies the seminary. Thus making it impossible to contact the school or former students. This is his first deception.

Also, the Priest is not Christ. Nor does his ordination grant him special "powers".

No Priest or "Bishop" would refer to the Church as the "Old Roman Catholic Institution" (The "Old Roman Catholics" being a schismatic sect in Germany, started after Vatican I) This is also the first time Alberto referred to himself as a "Bishop". Again, with no proof.

He goes on to give statistics with no backing and repeat a extremely anti-catholic book as if it were an expert source. But like many Anti-catholics he refrains from citing the Scriptures, the Catechism, or the Code of Canon Law. This is necessary to prevent the readers from going to those sources. He needs to create dependance on his words as the only facts. This is another tactic of con-men.

And the age-old myth that all priests are rapists, and nuns are sexually repressed. And his source? The equally dubious Charles Chiniquy (whom the church does admit was a priest, yet another ex-priest that is not denied, no, only Alberto gets that honor)

No tunnels have ever been found linking Monasteries with convents. In spain or anywhere else. But Alberto throws out places and dates to appear to be telling the truth. Of course those dates are in the middle of a civil war, so when absolutely no proof is found of his story, he can just claim that it was destroyed, convenient. Of course this is just one of the stories he stole from Maria Monk.

On page 13, he makes one of his biggest mistakes, he claims the Priesthood cannot exist without celibacy. Here he shows his ignorance of Catholicism. If he had been a Priest he would have known that Married priests were allowed in the western church for the first almost 1000 years of the Church, he would also know that there is no vow of celibacy for Priests in the Eastern rites of the Church. So clearly the sacrament of Holy Orders has nothing to do with Celibacy.

Then he quotes Augustine, no actually he doesn't, he quotes Augustine and then states that quote has been removed. Again, how convenient for him.

Next, Alberto shows his ignorance of both Latin and Greek. First of all, Simon is Hebrew, not greek. and means, "he who hears"

And "Petros" does not mean "little pebble" that is "Lithos" Petros is the masculine form of the word "Petra" Jesus could not name Simon "Petra" as Simon was a man and "Petra" is a feminine noun.

Jesus did not call Peter "satan" Satan gave Peter those words, that is whom Jesus was condemning. Because would Jesus have allowed Satan in their midst? No, of course not.

Alberto then goes on to point out yet another hypocrite priest, he needs his readers to at once pity and fear Priests.

"We were not allowed to read Bibles". This, of course, is an outright lie. Every Seminary teaches the Bible and requires students to read them. The Scriptures are read aloud in Church, but Alberto never mentions that. He needs to perpetuate myths in order to make his story believable.

The Nhil Obistat and Imprintur is not a "seal of approval" It is not a "seal" at all.

The church has always known Peter was married, as a matter of fact there have been 8 married Popes and one widower. Read the 1911 Catholic Encyclopedia, that states clearly Peter was married. This is one of Albertos most revealing mistakes. It shows a complete lack of knowledge and History that no seminarian would possess.

He then refers people to "The two Babylons" by Hislop, and "50 years in the Church of Rome" by Chiniquy. Both, of course, available from Chick publications for a small fee. (this was the main purpose of the tracts, for Jack to sell more publications) Now, he could have referred people to the Catechism or the Catholic Encyclopedia for clarification on Dogma or Doctrine. But that needs to be avoided, when people find out the truth, they have the bad habit of converting.

It claims the Inquisition started in 1200 and was run by the Dominicans and Jesuits. Of course the problem is neither of these groups existed in 1200.

Next, comes a story about Donna Maria de Bohorques actually found in Juan Antonio Llorente's "A Critical History of the Inquisition of Spain", pp. 216-218,

Alberto actually got the story all wrong, he combined the stories of Dona Maria and her sister Dona Jane and combined them into a new person called "Dona Isabella". He then goes on to tell more lies about the Catholic church, the most glaring being that Catholic's believe that Mary claimed to be "the way, the truth and the light". This is of course completely false and is solely to reinforce the sterotype of the uneducated that Catholics are completely ignorant of scriptures.

Again, he goes into details that he destroyed churches and Pastors (never of course, naming ANY of them in order to prevent anyone from trying to verify) He claimed then he was sent to a seminary in Costa Rica, again, not giving a name, why?

Then comes the infamous myth of the "roman Catholic Supercomputer", its absurdity speaks for itself.

In 1981, Alberto states that it "won't be long" before Jesus comes, it is now 27 years later. "Jesus is coming soon" is often a tactic used by religious con men to convince people that their life savings won't be needed and to use it to "spread the truth" before it is too late.

On Page 21, is the total irony. It shows Alberto lying to a Pastor to win his trust by claiming he "suffered under them" (the Catholic Church) in Spain. The EXACT SAME claim he is making in this comic. Was he lying then or lying in this comic?

The next thing, he introduces the angelic looking little Catholic girl, whose "job" it is to destroy marriages and basically act like a %!%+!. This is one of many caricatures he introduces. These caricatures serve the purpose of making people distrust and despise devout Catholics. This is another tactic that rather than educate people about true Catholicism, just scare them away from it.

Then, he sets up his alibi. Saying that the first thing the RCC tries to do to attack good and Holy men of God is to discredit them. Thus, now any attacks on Albertos credibility are now explained. He is not wrong, he is being attacked because he is right. It is a great con, used by snake oil salesman and hucksters for years, (ie the recent book: Cures THEY don't want you to know about). It is always the truth-seeker that is attacked by the liars. Thus, he has ironclad credibility, even though he has provided no proof. The lack of proof becomes the proof.

Again comes another irony, he explains how he "acted" anti-catholic to gain trust. Again, identical to what he is doing in this comic, if he was lying then why shouldn't we believe he is lying now?

Again is the angelic Catholic School Girls, both deceptive, one a %!%+!. Again, this is to scare people into not letting their children get anywhere near Catholics. And he stated that they committed all these sins, to "get points to get out of Purgatory". There is no "point system" for purgatory. Again, Alberto shows his ignorance of a Basic catholic belief. He goes on to show how little he knows about Purgatory, it was not "made official" at Florence. One must wonder, if Catholicism is so transparent, why is Alberto sowing so much fear of it?

The idea that killing can bring grace is horrible. It cannot. And this odd obsession anti-catholics have with Purgatory, they think it controls our lives, it does not.

He then goes on to twist and distort the history of the Mass, we have records of "mass" being held in the second century, Alberto claims it was introduced in the 4th. Catholics do not believe Christ is re-sacrificed at the Mass, a trained Priest would know that. And it is Christ who stated of the bread and wine "this is my body...this is my blood" The blasphemy, to a Catholic, is denying it.

And the notion that Hebrews 10:12 is NEVER read in the Catholic Church is laughable. Actually it is read on Palm Sunday. More proof of Riveras ignorance of Catholicism.

It then makes the ridiculous assertion that Catholics believe that no one can approach Jesus but Mary. Of course we can approach Jesus. He also brings up the myth of Mary as co-redeemer. Catholics do not believe that.

He then goes on to claim that a Jewish rabbi found that it was offensive for Jesus to refer to his mother as "woman". Of course here Alberto, without realizing it, accuses Christ of commiting a sin (dishonoring his mother). But he skips past that to accuse Catholics of worshipping Mary as a goddess.

And Catholics certainly don't believe Mary is "co-equal with God the Father" Again, a mistake no Priest would make. But, he needs to explain the title of "Mother of God" this way, because the truth might actually make people think, so here a lie serves the purpose of scaring people away from Catholicsim and making them pity the ignorant stupid Catholics.

He then gives twisted definitions of penance,

And then come the proofs of the id card and letter, I have dealt with elsewhere. They, in and of themselves prove nothing as they can be acquired by other than legitimate means.

Next, Alberto claims that high Catholics are Masons. Hardly likely as code of Canon Law at that time forbid membership in the Masons and stated it was grounds for immediate excommunication.

He then claimed that the Illuminati were one and the same with the alumbrados, also unlikely since Loyola was one year old when the Alumbrados first appeared. Also, the illuminati was made up of Bavarian agnostics 200 years after the Alumbrados (which were heretical Catholic mystics) disappeared.

Of course, he then goes on to explain that the reason so many churches are recognizing Catholics as fellow Christians is not because they are finally opening their eyes to the truth, but because they are afraid of attacks by the Catholic "plants" in their congregations.

Alberto then goes on to claim he admitted everything in front of a large crowd in Guatamala in 1965. No details are given such as the name of this gathering or who was present, no, as usual, Alberto is very careful not to give out too much detail that may be used to try to verify his story, he needs total dependence on him and his facts.

He then claims that he was tortured in a mental hospital to the point he was placed in an iron lung, nice image, but the iron lung had pretty much ceased to be used in 1960. He goes on to claim he recieved the revelation that Jesus cannot be re-sacrificed at the mass. Well, if he had been a priest, he would not have needed God to reveal this to him, because the church does not believe this. It is just yet another thing to cast doubts on his credibility as a Priest.

He then states he got out of the iron lung and "removed the tubes from my body" Either he was in the iron lung or he had tubes in his body, you can't have rubber tubes in a iron lung, they would constantly be contracting or expanding with the air pressure, this pretty much debunks this part of Alberto's story as impossible.

This is my take on Albertos' story, I have tried to avoid any discussion of him or his background as the complaint is always that Catholics never discuss what he says, only attack him.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Prophecy of the Century?!?!

An Anonymous commenter sent me a comment to check out 2 videos on youtube. Done by a group calling itself "Worlds last chance", they are really nothing more than old re-hashed Catholic-Church-is-the-whore-of-Revelation nonsense. The vid starts out looking like a tribute to Pope John Paul II, but of course, it then goes into the realm of the nonsensical.

At 2:12 the nonsense starts, it gives "definitions" of "prophecy", that "woman" equals "church" and gives Ephesians 5:25 as the justification for this. Well Ephesians 5:25 does compare a woman to the church. Which is true as the church is the bridegroom of Christ. There is no link between this passage in Ephesians however and the symbolism of Revelation. Because, Revelation 17:18 states exactly who the woman is, and she is not a church, she is: "the great city that has sovereignty over the kings of the earth.". IOW Imperial Rome.

But, of course, they identify it as the Roman Catholic Church, because it is the point of their video, reach a conclusion and THEN look for proof. It is the hallmark of anti-catholic apologetics.

They then go on to make several "points" . "Point one" compares the scarlet and purple of the woman of Revelation 17 to the scarlet worn by Cardinals of the Church. Of course some research would have shown that scarlet and Purple were colors of the Roman Emperors.

"Point two" is made with Rev 17:6, of course this is a reference to the Roman persecution of the Christians, and the bloodsport that was often made of it. But they, of course, claim it refers to the "millions killed during the inquistion". Of course this is an absolute falsehood. The fact is, more Catholics were killed by Oliver Cromwell in the space of a couple of years in Ireland than Protestants killed in the hundreds of years of the Inquisition.

Of course at 3:40 into the vid, it states that they were executed for the heresy of reading the Bible. This is of course, laughable, as Catholics have always been free to read the Holy Scriptures. But anti-catholics must keep up the myth that Catholics are not allowed to read the Bible.

And point "three" is silly, It states that the seven hills that the woman sits on are the seven hills of Rome. And that is correct. But the Vatican, does not sit on ANY of these hills, as a matter of fact it is on the opposite side of the river Tiber from Rome. So while anyone who knows history will recognize the woman as Imperial Rome, the uneducated who equate Rome with Vatican, will miss this every time.

It goes on to claim purple and scarlet are symbols of bishops and Cardinals, it is. But the symbolism is clearly the Emperors and their subordinate Kings.

It then quotes Revelation 17:10, and makes the ridiculous assertion that this is an allusion to the Vatican City State. It asks the question, "When did the Roman Catholic Church have any Kings?" Of course the answer could be any number of the Christian Kingdoms that have existed in the Last 2000 years, but that does not fit their propaganda, so they claim the only time Popes had their own territory was with the signing of the Lateran Treaty. Of course this just shows no historical research was performed at all. Or they would have known of the existence of the Papal States for 1000 years prior to the establishment of Italy.

Having failed history 101, it then goes on to make the ridiculous "prophecy" that Pope John Paul II will rise from the grave possessed by a demon and become the anti-christ. Given this videographers track record so far, I relegate this to the absurd.