Sunday, March 29, 2015

Libido Redux: Homosexuality and the Ongoing Spiritual Culture War

It has been my experience that nothing seems to stir up the culture wars faster than the subject of homosexuality.  Some see this lifestyle as being no different than any other lifestyle, and as a matter of a civil rights issue parallel to the 1960’s and Martin Luther King. “Who are we to tell anyone else how to live?” “Jesus never spoke about it”, etc.  On the other side, you have a group of people who think that homosexual sexual acts are an abomination in the eyes of the Lord, and it should never be allowed at any time. Is it natural to put a sexual organ and its emissions into the digestive system of same sex partners, or should sexual organs only be put into complementary sexual organs of the opposite sex?  Who’s right? Bishop Fulton Sheen once said about right and wrong, "Right is right, even if no one is right.  Wrong is wrong, even if everyone is wrong."
Sacred Scripture records in Genesis 19:24 that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed. This is where the term sodomite was coined.  Why?  The people who say that homosexuality is not sinful don’t really have a good answer for this, but some say it was because of a lack of hospitality by Lot.  Tradition says that it was because of immorality, pure and simple.  Sacred Scripture condemns homosexuality in Leviticus 20:13, Romans 1:26-27, & 1 Timothy 8-10.  Notice, however, that it does not condemn homosexuals. St. Matthew 21:31 reads that harlots will be entering the kingdom of heaven before self-righteous hypocrites, and the same could be said of homosexuals. The problem here though, is that they have to first repent of their homosexual sinful acts, which they don’t even recognize as being sinful.  
Asa I explain at great length in my book, neomodernists don’t understand why anyone would invoke the teachings of Scripture regarding homosexual sex acts in the 21st century, as if to say that as a consequence of the sexual revolution we are all enlightened now, as if to say that people who believe what God has revealed are out of step with the current realities of the modern world and “enlightenment”.   As we read in Genesis 3, the devil is only too happy for people to make up their own moral codes based on what they “feel” is right.  6 billion people on earth with 6 billion different moral codes – a demon’s delight. 
Often, in bygone years those with the homosexual orientation would opine, “What we do in the privacy of our own home is no one else’s business, so leave us alone”.
Now, however, this “privacy of our own home” argument has morphed into an argument of society has to accept our lifestyle as normal and equal to marriage, and we will sue you, publish your names and addresses, and demonstrate angrily if you publicly come out against us.”  “Believe like us, OR ELSE YOU GET IT!”  Homosexual activists have set up this straw man that says “If you disagree with our agenda on homosexual marriage, then that means you hate us.” This is not the truth. Disagreement on an important societal issue like marriage equals hate?  What if we all did that – “You disagree with me on raising taxes, public transportation, or health care, and therefore you hate me, and I will take it out on you accordingly.”

Appropriately, the one obstacle standing in the way of the homosexual agenda is the Catholic Church.   Their goal seems to be to portray the Church as being out of step with reality.  The Catechism teaches that sex outside of marriage between a man and a woman is always sinful, no matter how loud the voices are coming from the homosexual community and liberal politicians.  
From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered." They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.
2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.
2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.

If homosexual hookups are so normal right and good in the first place, why is a condom even necessary?  Maybe because they are not normal, right and good.  They don’t lead to procreation, the chief reason God invented sex in the first place (“Go forth and multiply, He said in Genesis 1:28).  Homosexuals have to recruit new homosexuals to keep up their lifestyle. Think back on how the homosexuals who infiltrated the Catholic priesthood took advantage of altar boys over a 50 year period.
In short, homosexuality is not a normal state of life.  Everyone, including homosexuals, must overcome lust.  No one gets a pass on this task.  Lust is sinful, whether it is homosexual lust or heterosexual lust. And everyone is called to celibacy that is not married to a person of the opposite sex.  Homosexuals are not to be hated or assailed; they are to be loved and prayed for.  A great strategy is that we do all of the praying, and we leave all of the judging to God.  And when they insult us and maybe even spit on us, we are to do just like Jesus did during the Passion – Turn the other cheek and ask God to forgive them. Why?  Because no servant is greater than his Master (John 13:16).  Jesus said that they hated Him, and they will hate us too if we follow Him (John 15:18).  That prophecy of Jesus is certainly being fulfilled today in this battle for the hearts and minds of the world concerning homosexuality and the homosexual agenda.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Fighting the Irish

The University of Notre Dame

Thanks to the new Indiana law, the University of Notre Dame and other Catholic colleges in the state have greater protection for their religious beliefs.  One would think our premier university would rejoice….

But: Does Notre Dame want the help?  Since October, it has provided spousal benefits to same-sex partners of employees, despite the public opposition of Bishop Kevin RhoadesNo longer able to cite the law as an excuse, will Notre Dame now uphold Catholic teaching?

The superintendent of Catholic schools in Cincinnati sat down with The Cardinal Newman Society to explain why his Archdiocese supports Catholic education as "ministry"—the very language that Archbishop Cordileone is defending in San Francisco. Check it out.

Why pro-life leaders think Catholic schools are "vehicles" of the pro-life movement. See here as well.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Read the Documents! (fini)

The Seventh and final passage:

“Basing itself upon Sacred Scripture and Tradition, [this Council] teaches that the Church, now sojourning on earth as an exile, is necessary for salvation. Christ, present to us in His Body, which is the Church, is the one Mediator and the unique way of salvation. In explicit terms He Himself affirmed the necessity of faith and baptism and thereby affirmed also the necessity of the Church, for through baptism, as through a door, men enter the Church. Whosoever, therefore, knowing that the Catholic Church was made necessary by Christ, would refuse to enter or to remain in it, could not be saved” (Lumen Gentium, #14).

Vatican II’s Lumen Gentium (#14-16) acknowledged the possibility of salvation for non-Catholics. The result? Many Catholics, lay and clerical questioned the need for the missionary undertakings of the Church. If non-Catholics could be saved, why bother trying to convert them?

To be clear: Lumen Gentium says that those who know of the necessity of the Church for salvation cannot remain outside of it and hope to be saved. Also (notwithstanding an acknowledgement of the possibility of salvation for non-Catholics) it also says that the Church is necessary for salvation and that Christ is “the unique way of salvation.”

The heterodox interpret Vatican II’s acknowledgment of the possibility of salvation for non-Catholics as saying that there are other paths of salvation outside the Church. Read the documents! This is not what either the council or the Church teaches. As a 2000 document from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith makes clear, God’s “salvific grace … is always given by means of Christ in the Spirit and has a mysterious relationship to the Church.” The point is that those who may happen to be saved outside the visible confines of the Church are not saved in spite of the Church or Christ, but arrive at salvation some way through the Church and Christ. The council is, in fact, reaffirming the exclusive claim of Christ and His Church as the one path to salvation.

This passage indicates just how far from the conciliar documents many in “the spirit of Vatican II” have drifted. The joy of my hope is that as a Church we will continue to reflect critically on post-conciliar years to see just how well Vatican II has been so far implemented, and to consider how we can be truer to the council’s teaching as we move forward into the future.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Children of the Gay Couples

Often in class I mention to my (all female) students that the data on the harm done to children raised in homes of people who desire sex with people of the same sex is difficult to dispute. Because it is print media, they seldom read it in its entirety. Now, however, the adult children of "same sex marriage" are speaking out in the social media, previously  brushed aside in the so-called “social science research” on same-sex parenting.  As we are made in God's image and likeness, and the Trinity is the genesis of the family as God intended, let us remember the truth of the matter. Should you decide not to be ashamed of the truth, and proclaim it in the public square, be prepared for retribution. And rejoice, For Our Lord said:

For they shall deliver you up to councils, and in the synagogues you shall be beaten, and you shall stand before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony unto them.

And unto all nations the gospel must first be preached. And when they shall lead you and deliver you up, be not thoughtful beforehand what you shall speak; but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye. For it is not you that speak, but the Holy Ghost. And the brother shall betray his brother unto death, and the father his son; and children shall rise up against the parents, and shall work their death. And you shall be hated by all men for my name's sake. But he that shall endure unto the end, he shall be saved.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Which Sunday Is It?

When I was young the season of Lent had a slightly different structure than it does now. If one pruses a missal from back then, one notices that there are only four Sundays of Lent, followed by Passion Sunday, followed by Palm Sunday. In a current missal you will typically see that Palm Sunday is now labeled “Passion (Palm) Sunday”.

Why is this?

According to Dom Gueranger in The Liturgical Year, “This Sunday is called Passion Sunday, because the Church begins, on this day, to make the sufferings of our Redeemer her chief thought”. Traditionally, all statues and crucifixes were veiled at the Vespers for Passion Sunday. The Introit, Gradual and Tract all are petitions to save the just from the persecution of the unjust and the Tract even foreshadows the scourging:

Introit: “Judge me, O God, and distinguish my cause from the nation that is not holy: deliver me from the unjust and deceitful man: for thou art my God and my strength...”
Gradual: “Deliver me, O Lord, from my enemies; teach me to do thy will. Thou, O Lord, art my deliverer from the enraged Gentiles: thou wilt put me out of the reach of those that assault me; and thou wilt rescue me from the unrighteous man.”
Tract: “Many a time have they fought against me from my youth. Let Israel now say: They have often attacked me from my youth. But they could not prevail over me: the wicked have wrought upon my back. They have lengthened their iniquity: the Lord who is just, will cut the necks of sinners.”

The Epistle is from Heb 9, 11-15 and is St. Paul's explanation of Christ as both the High Priest and the perfect victim who was sacrificed for our salvation.

The Gospel is from John 8: 46-59 and is the condemnation of the Jews by Christ in the temple. He tells them that they do not know God and that before Abraham was I AM. They try to stone him but he slips away.

The Communion Antiphon is the final Passion foreshadowing of the Mass. The verse is the words Christ used to institute the Eucharist at the Last Supper: “'This is my body, which shall be given up for you: this is the cup of the new covenant in my blood,' says the Lord, 'do this as often as you receive it, in remembrance of me.'”

Passion Sunday was also known as “Judica Sunday” in reference to the Introit “Judica me, Deus, et discerne causam meam de gente non sancta...”, similar to Laetare and Gaudete Sundays being named after the first word of the Introit for those days.

So why was this Sunday eliminated from the liturgical year?

According to Cardinal Bugnini in his Reform of the Liturgy, “Also suppressed as a title is 'Passiontide.' The whole of it now becomes, even externally, a part of Lent...The readings and prayers used in antiquity on the third, fourth, and fifth Sundays have been restored (the Sundays of 'the Samaritan,' 'the Man Born Blind,' and 'Lazarus'). The final two weeks are dominated by preparation for the celebration of the passion.”

And so, on March 21, 1969, the Sacred Congregation of Rites published the General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar which stated that “The Sundays of this season are called the First, Second, Third, Fourth, and Fifth Sundays of Lent. The Sixth Sunday, which marks the beginning of Holy Week, is called Passion Sunday (Palm Sunday).”

In spite of the suppression of Passion Sunday, the tradition still echoes in the new rite. It is still permitted to veil the statues and crucifixes at vespers before the fifth Sunday of Lent if your parish wants to do it before Holy Thursday. You can also still hear, if your parish uses the propers of the season, Psalm 42, 1-2 as the Introit on this day. “Judge me, O God, and distinguish my cause from the nation that is not holy: deliver me from the unjust and deceitful man: for thou art my God and my strength...”

Libido Redux: A Case of Mistaken Identity!

David Prosen
I have blogged extensively on how, according to His Holiness Pope Paul VI, Satan is a clever seducer who can enter the Body of Christ through the human libido, and have written about how this is done both in my book and in these pages. Rarely have I come upon so succinct expression of how Our Lord in and through His Church has "overcome the world" and its thinking on the homosexual orientation as this one by David Prosen. Click in the link ad educate yourself in the truth....

Monday, March 16, 2015

Fashion Statement

Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are fashion legends, gay, and together at one point. They have come out with some statements against gay marriage and gay couples having children.

Ø  In an interview with the Italian magazine Panorama, they said, “The only family is the traditional one. No chemical offspring and rented uterus. Life has a natural flow; there are things that cannot be changed.”

Ø  More from Breitbart:
They also said, “Procreation must be an act of love.”
“I call children of chemistry, synthetic children. Uteri for rent, semen chosen from a catalogue,” Dolce stated.
Gabanna said, “The family is not a fad. In it there is a supernatural sense of belonging.”

The pair have long been outspoken about gay marriage. 

Ø  In 2013, the LondonTelegraph asked them if they had ever considered getting married. They answered, “What? Never!” Dolce said, “I’m a practicing Catholic.”

Ø  Gabbana told the Daily Mail in 2006, “I am opposed to the idea of a child growing up with two gay parents.”

No surprise—LGBT News in Italy is already calling for a boycott of Dolce and Gabbana.
Liberal outrage is at an all-time high when individuals dare think for themselves and don’t follow the sheep!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Half Way There

Most Catholics today are used to the Mass being conducted in English, and they hardly ever think about the fact that Latin remains the official language of the Catholic Church. But occasionally, Latin reasserts itself, as it does in the case of Laetare Sunday, the popular name for the Fourth Sunday in Lent. Laetare means "Rejoice" in Latin, and the Introit (entrance antiphon) in both the Traditional Latin Mass and the Novus Ordo is Isaiah 66:10-11, which begins "Laetare, Jerusalem" ("Rejoice, O Jerusalem").

Because the midpoint of Lent is the Thursday of the third week of Lent, Laetare Sunday has traditionally been viewed as a day of celebration, on which the austerity of Lent is briefly lessened. The passage from Isaiah continues, "rejoice with joy, you that have been in sorrow," and on Laetare Sunday, the purple vestments and altar cloths of Lent are set aside, and rose ones are used instead. Flowers, which are normally forbidden during Lent, may be placed on the altar. Traditionally, the organ was never played during Lent, except on Laetare Sunday.

Laetare Sunday is also known as Rose Sunday, sand it has a counterpart in Advent: Gaudete Sunday, the Third Sunday of Advent, when purple vestments are exchanged for rose ones. The point of both days is to provide us encouragement as we progress toward the end of each respective penitential season.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Libido Redux: Sexual Wisdom

Often in teaching my classes, rather than refer to sexual intercourse (when the subject of “having sex” comes up), I refer to it as the marital act. My intention is to teach that use of our sexual faculty is by Divine command to be reserved for marriage between husband and wife. “Having sex with” merely reduces the marital act to genital activity and an exchange of body fluids.

The marital act is holy. Does this mean that married couples must accept that they may not limit the number of children that God intends for them? No, if one is familiar with what the Church refers to as natural family planning. The Church has never determined the number of children a married couple should have, nor has it besought any commandment that couples have as many as physically possible.

The complementarity of marriage occurs in self-donation, of placing one’s spouse’s well-being above one’s own. Examples: conversation across a dinner table, in the kitchen and in bed; holding a job; holding one’s tongue. One could go on. Marital self-giving endeavors always to be open to a world of kindnesses, restraints, tensions, and accommodations that are part and parcel of a life together.

Let us remember Vatican II’s call for Christians to holiness, which dwells in the person who acts. All animal species engage in a physical union of male and female genitalia accompanied by rhythmic movements. Only human persons bring tenderness, intelligence, consideration, delicacy, playfulness, even humor to sex. Lovemaking is an activity of the whole person.

As I take up in my book, as a result of the “sexual revolution” young people are alone in a permissive wasteland. If the Church is to lead them toward a humanitarian understanding of the gift of sex, her spokesmen must always first respect it for its intrinsic goodness, not solely for a procreative function shared with every species in creation.