30 June 2019

California Senate Passes Bill That Would Violate Seal of Confession

This is a bit old, but I missed it last month. The attacks on the Mystical Body of Christ are ramping up . How long until full scale persecution?

From Catholic San Francisco


 SACRAMENTO, Calif. – State senators in California have voted to approve a law that would require priests to violate the seal of confession. Senate Bill 360 passed Thursday by an overwhelming margin, with legislators voting 30-4 in favor of the measure.

The bill would require priests to report any knowledge or suspicion of child abuse gained while hearing the confession of another priest or colleague.

In a statement released Friday, Los Angeles Archbishop Jose Gomez said he was “deeply disappointed” by the result and insisted that strong child protection measures did not require the violation of the sanctity of the sacrament of confession.

A previous draft of the law would have compelled the violation of the sacramental seal any time a priest came to suspect abuse from any penitent. In a statement released Monday, Gomez acknowledged the changes but said that “no government, for whatever reason, should violate the privacy and confidentiality of that sacred conversation.”

“SB 360 still denies the sanctity of confession to every priest in the state and to thousands of Catholics who work with priests in parishes and other Church agencies and ministries.”

The sacramental seal is covered by civil law in many jurisdictions around the world. The “clergy-penitent privilege” is widely regarded as a fundamental exercise of religious liberty.

The bill’s sponsor, California state Senator Jerry Hill (D-Calif. 13), has claimed that “the clergy-penitent privilege has been abused on a large scale, resulting in the unreported and systemic abuse of thousands of children across multiple denominations and faiths.”

The senator has claimed that such abuse has been revealed through “recent investigations by 14 attorneys general, the federal government, and other countries.”

Despite the volume of investigations into the clerical sexual abuse crisis no data exists establishing or indicating the use of sacramental confession either to facilitate or perpetuate the sexual abuse of minors.

Critics of the proposed legislation have noted that sacramental confession between accomplices is invalid unless in imminent danger of death, as is the absolution of a penitent who intends to reoffend.

Andy Rivas, executive director of the California Catholic Conference, said Thursday California's bishops are committed to combating sexual abuse of minors and strengthening mandatory reporting laws, but "interjecting the government into the confessional is not going to accomplish that objective and could undermine the guarantee of confidentiality all of us depend upon." 

Rivas added the conference would “continue to work to protect confession for all as the bill moves to the State Assembly.”

Canon law describes the seal of the confessional to be “inviolable”, and priests are “absolutely forbidden” to disclose the sins of a penitent “in any way, for any reason.” Violation of the seal by a priest is a grave crime against the faith and is punished by an automatic excommunication which can be augmented with other penalties, including dismissal from the clerical state.     

Happy Dominion Day! God Save the Queen!

Well, it's 00.00 NDT in Newfoundland, so it's Dominion Day in Canada! For the youngsters among you who don't remember the real name, Happy Canada Day! Here's some music to celebrate the 152nd birthday of the True North, Strong and Free!

First the Royal Anthem, in honour of Her Majesty Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada.

O, Canada, in English, with the original lyrics, 'In all Thy sons command', not the bastardised ones Daddy's Little Boy wants people to sing.

O, Canada in French, with lyrics in French and English. I'm surprised Justin 'Bieber' Trudeau hasn't tried to Islamicise the lyrics to this version. 

And, The Maple Leaf Forever, the 'unofficial national anthem' for decades before O, Canada was adopted.

Not music, but the 'I Am Canadian' rant from the Molson's beer commercial. A classic!

And no Dominion/Canada Day would be complete without a mention of THE Canadian, Stompin' Tom Connors. Here is the last letter he wrote to his fans, just before his death.

Charles Thomas "Stompin' Tom" ConnorsOC (February 9, 1936 – March 6, 2013) 

Hello friends, I want all my fans, past, present, or future, to know that without you, there would have not been any Stompin' Tom.

It was a long hard bumpy road, but this great country kept me inspired with its beauty, character, and spirit, driving me to keep marching on and devoted to sing about its people and places that make Canada the greatest country in the world.

I must now pass the torch, to all of you, to help keep the Maple Leaf flying high, and be the Patriot Canada needs now and in the future.

I humbly thank you all, one last time, for allowing me in your homes, I hope I continue to bring a little bit of cheer into your lives from the work I have done.


Canada Day, Up Canada Way.
by Stompin' Tom Connors

Take Me Back to Old Alberta
I wasn't born in Alberta, but as I say, I'm a Kansan by birth, and an Albertan by choice.

Blue Berets, honouring Canada's
Peace Keepers

Believe in Your Country

So Long, Stompin' Tom
A song written by Mike Plume, a fan of Stompin' Tom's, on hearing of his death.

Swedes and the Reconquista

What could the Swedes possibly have to do with the Reconquest of Iberia from the Moorish Hordes who invaded through Gibraltar in AD 711? Well, pour yourself an adult beverage, pull up a chair, and I'll tell you.

At the time the Saracens descended on what is  now Spain it was occupied by the Visigothic Kingdom under King Roderick. And who were the Visigoths? They were Swedes with a severe case of wanderlust. 

The Goths originated in southern Sweden, from the area where the historic provinces of Gotland, Östergötland, and Västergötland (whence my grandmother came) are situated. During the Folkvandring (wandering of peoples = Migration Period) they got itchy feet and took off in a generally southeasterly direction, ending up in the Pannonian Plain (see the map, below).

There, they split into two major bands the Ostrogoths (Eastern Goths) and Visigoths (Western Goths), which has nothing to do with Östergötland, and Västergötland! Some of the Ostrogoths crossed the Black Sea into Anatolia. Others, and the Visigoths, wandered back westward into the main part of Europe.

In AD 410, the Visigoths, under their King, Alaric I, sacked Rome, where, in AD 493, the Ostrogoths under Theoderic would establish the Ostrogothic Kingdom of Italy. 

Having despoiled the Eternal City, the Visigoths moved on into Hispania. Here, they defeated the Vandals and the Suebi and established their own Kingdom.

Originally converted to the Arian heresy by Ulfilas, they accepted Nicene Christology around AD 589, under King  Reccared I, thus becoming the first Swedes to become Catholic!

So, in AD 711, when the jihad invaded the Iberian Peninsula, it was largely controlled by Swedes, 400 plus years removed from Sweden!

Don Pelayo
However, the Peninsula was not totally conquered. A Visigothic nobleman, Pelayo (Latin, Pelagius; Asturian, Pelayu) led refugees into the mountains of Asturias. In AD 718 or 722 he defeated the Moors in the Battle of Covadonga, thus beginning the Reconquista which 774 (or 778) years later, under the Catholic Monarchs, Ferdinand and Isabella, would finally expel the last of the jihadis from  Spain

And, that's how the Swedes started the Reconquista!

Memo to the Pan-Amazon Synod: The Gospel of Christ Doesn’t Preach Exceptions

The Editors of the NCRegister sound yet another warning of the dangers inherent in the upcoming Sin-od.

From the National Catholic Register 

By the Editors 

EDITORIAL: The evidence to date strongly suggests the October gathering is in danger of heading down the same road of damaging, unnecessary controversy as the preceding family synods — potentially to a much greater degree.

The proposal to ordain “proven” married men to address a shortage of priests was foreseen as a hot-button topic of debate for the Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon region in October, long before the publication of the meeting’s official agenda this month.

And, with the formal release of the synod’s instrumentum laboris (working document), the issue of married priests was indeed present as a potential problem, alongside other areas of concern, such as the document’s treatment of ecological issues and its distortions of inculturation.

But more fundamentally, alarm is being generated by the working document’s apparent intent to apply “local” Amazonian exceptions to Church teaching and practice on controversial matters, under the mantras of “synodality” and “decentralization.” As recent experience has indicated, such “exceptions” can afterward be exported to other geographical areas — thereby transforming a supposedly local exception into a more general rule.

To be held at the Vatican Oct. 6-27, the upcoming synod, titled “Amazonia: New Paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology,” is a regional one. Unlike previous synods under Pope Francis that brought together bishops from all over the world, this gathering is more limited in participation, comprised of bishops from the large Amazon region, Vatican officials, special papal appointees, and selected experts who work on the ground in the area.

This localization of participants has been justified on the grounds that it’s sensible to limit direct participation to those Church leaders who are intimately acquainted with the needs of the Amazonian geographical region. Perhaps that’s true, but critics note that it’s also highly convenient in terms of ensuring the predominance of synodal participants who support the hotly debated perspectives expressed in the instrumentum laboris regarding themes like the ordination of married men, the creation of an undefined new “women’s ministry,” the mandatory “teaching of indigenous pan-Amazonian theology” in all regional educational institutions, and the working document’s pronounced prioritization of ecological concerns over Christian evangelization.

Regional gatherings are not new in the more-than-50-year history of the Synod of Bishops. But unlike previous regional synods, the Pan-Amazon synod follows the contentious synods on the family in 2014 and 2015 that led to the apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia in 2016, with its confusing eighth chapter that opened the door to reception of the Eucharist for divorced-and-civilly-remarried Catholics, depending on how local bishops in various parts of the world interpreted Amoris’ unclear guidance.

Indeed, at the family synods the issue of reception of Communion — unexpectedly specified as an issue needing attention by German Cardinal Walter Kasper in early 2014, and thereafter inserted into the synodal process by organizers despite the resistance of a large proportion of the participating bishops — overshadowed everything else under discussion. In effect, the push to obtain a controversial “solution” to a matter that was of limited concern to the large majority of participants became the most prominent focus of that entire synodal process.

Certainly the Amazon basin is an area of great significance, both in terms of its human population and its ecological importance, and it possesses some unique characteristics and problems that warrant local pastoral solutions. Unfortunately, however, the evidence to date strongly suggests the Pan-Amazon synod is in danger of heading down the same road of damaging, unnecessary controversy as the preceding family synods — potentially to a much greater degree.

If the instrumentum laboris is an accurate guide, Catholics can expect synodal recommendations to emerge in October supporting the ordination of married men, some kind of “official ministry” for women, the promotion of indigenous theologies with little consideration given to their underlying pantheistic character, and the advancement of one-sided ecological perspectives — all marketed as limited, regionalized solutions addressing the real-world and dire pastoral needs of “indigenous peoples and cultures.”

But are these innovations really intended to remain limited to Pan-Amazonia and not seized upon by those in other areas with their own agendas? The available evidence indicates otherwise.

Consider, for example, the synodal “study” meeting that took place in Rome shortly after the release of the working document. Cardinal Kasper and several other progressively inclined German Church leaders were a prominent contingent among the 30 participants at the closed-door, invitation-only meeting, which was convened under the auspices of the Pan-Amazonian Ecclesial Network (REPAM). Also in attendance were Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Hummes, the general relator of the synod and the president of REPAM, and Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, the general secretary of the Synod of Bishops.

It should be noted that it was the German bishops who were the driving force promoting reception of Communion for civilly-divorced-and-remarried Catholics during the family synods.

Similarly, in the run-up to the Pan-Amazon gathering, leaders of the Church in Germany have been at the forefront of pushing for discussion of married priests, and Cardinal Kasper acknowledged that the issue was discussed at the closed-door meeting in Rome. It seems highly unlikely that the Germans envision that a local exception for married priests would apply only in the Amazon and not to their local Church, too.

This synod’s instrumentum laboris seems to be framed as a culmination of this pontificate’s focus on pastoral listening and accompaniment and its promotion of a conception of synodality that facilitates greater decentralization in order to afford local Churches more latitude to implement local solutions to their local pastoral problems.

Pope Francis has rightly been praised widely for his commitment to a comprehensive “pastoral conversion,” first articulated in his 2013 apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium. It is indeed central for the life of the Church to have a listening, pastoral posture, but that is not the only posture the Church — and the Pope — must take.

Equally fundamental are teaching clearly and consistently in conformity with the Church’s magisterium and governing the universal Church clearly and consistently to ensure that it doesn’t disintegrate into an assembly of local regions with contradictory and incompatible doctrines and practices.

So, for the welfare of the Church and for the salvation of the souls that have been entrusted to its care by Jesus, exceptions can never become the rule, at the upcoming Pan-Amazon synod — or anywhere else.

The Worst Evil of Uniatism?

So, according to Francis, 'Uniatism is not licit today'? Well, it fits in with his plans to destroy the Church. Make everyone accept the Nervous Ordo, and he's halfway there. 

From Fr Hunwicke's Mutual Enrichment

I find it encouraging that PF has canonised a group of "uniate" martyrs in Romania. I am less enthusiatic about his concomitant statement that "Uniatism is not licit today". If Uniatism means the acceptance of groups into full communion, with their own rites ad spiritualities, then PF is setting himself against many previous popes and not least his immediate predecessor, who erected the Ordinariates. Is PF, in a characteristic confusion, saying that people may only enter into full communion as individuals, and without bringing any patrimony? "If you want unity, then all I
offer you is the Novus Ordo (with, of course, my own on-going corrections of the Lord's Prayer)". Is his message really so narrow-minded, so bitter, so divisive, so destructive, so illiterate? If so, it needs to be vigorously repudiated and corrected. Absolute nonsense, Holy Father!! Here's yet another thing you've got wrong!!

I think that the saddest part in the video of Pope Ratzinger's Inauguration ... I watch it for comfort viewing when feeling depressed ... is the proclamation of the Holy Gospel by the Greek Deacon. The camera swivels to where the Byzantine and Oriental delegations are standing. And some of them have actually turned away, even turned their backs.

It is well known that many Separated Byzantines have a particular dislike of "Uniates". That, of course, is why PF feels he has to keep kicking Uniatism. But I wonder what their view is of the "Western Rite Orthodox" which some Separated Byzantine jurisdictions either encourage or at least tolerate. Why is this phenomenon tolerable while "Uniatism" is the ultimate sin?

Moreover, in (I am open to correction) most of these WRO groups the venerable Roman Canon is corrupted by having a Byzantine-style epiclesis interpolated after the Institution Narrative. This is a  gross disruption which makes a disrupted nonsense of the Roman liturgical Tradition (older, of course, than the Byzantine). For the Roman Canon, Consecration means that we offer bread and wine to the Omnipotent Father so that he, by accepting them, makes them the Body and Blood of His Son in accordance with the Words uttered by the Incarbnate Word. In Byzantium, the Priest, bidden by the Deacon, invokes the Holy Ghost to descend upon the elements so that by His Transformation, they may be the Lord's Body and Blood.

Each tradition is entitled to its own integrity. If some aggressive latiniser were to remove the Epiclesis from the form of the Byzantine Rite used by "Uniates", this would be outrageous,

It is no less outrageously unecumenical that some Byzantines treat the Roman Rite with exactly the same sort of contempt.

For such Byzantines to attack Uniatism is hypocrisy in its most primevally authentic form.

Nor is this behaviour in accordance with the praxis of the Byzantine Churches over two millennia. Many criticisms were, during parts of this period, hurled in each direction across the Adriatic Sea; but, to my knowledge, the lack of an epiclesis in the Roman Canon has not often been one of the criticisms levelled by the Eastern side.

One of our Oxford eccentrics, an Orthodox layman called Raymond Winch, published in 1988 The Canonical Mass of the English Orthodox. This contained what Winch claimed English (not, he emphasised, British) Orthodox were entitled to call their authentic liturgical usage. It consisted of the Roman Rite as used in Anglo-Saxon England.

Winch knew better than to Byzantinise. He wrote in his Preface:

I appreciate that liturgy is inevitably subject to development, but we ought to do our best to ensure that this development is of the gentle organic sort. I emphasise that it would be most unwise to permit any changes in our rite until it is once again firmly established  and in general use among us. In particular the anaphora of the Roman Mass is of great antiquity and provides a vital witness to the abiding tradition of the universal Church. Apart from the proper names, it is essential that the text of the canon be retained without addition or omission. To make any changes in the canon in order to "improve" its theology would be more reprehensible than to alter texts of the fathers on the presumption of superior spiritual insight.



Can it be shown that the immortality of man's soul follows from this truth?

Yes. Because if in the soul there is an act wholly independent of bodily matter, it must itself be independent of bodily matter.

What follows from this truth that the soul is, in itself, independent of bodily matter?

It follows that if the body perishes by separation from the soul, the soul itself does not perish (ibid.).

Will the human soul live for ever? 


Why then is the human soul united to a body?

The human soul is united to a body in order to make a substantial whole called man (LXXVI. 1).

Is it not then accidental that the soul is united to a body? 

No, for the soul was made to be joined to a body (LXXVI. 1).

What are the effects of the soul upon the body to which it is united?

The soul gives to the body every perfection that the body has, that is it gives to it being, life, and sense; but thought it cannot give, for this is proper to the soul itself.

Next - The Catechism of the Summa - XIV. OF THE VEGETATIVE AND SENSITIVE POWERS (A)

Pegues OP, R P Thomas. Catechism of the "Summa Theologica" of Saint Thomas Aquinas for the Use of the Faithful (pp. 64-65). Veritatis Splendor Publications. Kindle Edition.

French Court Orders Severely Disabled Man Be Disconnected from Food, Water

The Satanic Republic sinks to new depths of evil. Vive le Christ-roi! A bas la république!

From the National Catholic Register 


The Catholic Church does not require the use of extraordinary means to preserve life, but considers the provision of food and hydration to be an ordinary standard of care.

REIMS - The highest civil court in France has ordered that food and water may be removed from a severely disabled man, who has been artificially fed and hydrated in a hospital in the country for over 10 years.

The Court of Cassation ruled Friday that Vincent Lambert, 42, can be taken off life support. This is the final ruling, and there can be no appeal, the BBC reported.

This means Lambert’s parents have exhausted their legal options in their years-long fight to keep their son alive. However, the parents said Friday that they will press murder charges if Lambert is removed from food and hydration, according to AFP.

A French court had ruled in favor of euthanizing Lambert last month. He had been briefly removed from feeding and hydration tubes May 20, when a challenge passed the Paris appeals court and the hospital was ordered to return the support.

“In any other context, killing by starvation and dehydration is considered a crime against humanity,” said Alexandra Snyder, executive director of Life Legal, a group that advocates for the vulnerable, in a June 28 statement.

“Yet in France-as in the United States-we routinely impose this type of torturous death on individuals who are disabled. This has to stop. Disability should not be a death sentence.”

Euthanasia is illegal in France. However, a 2005 law allows physicians to refrain from using “disproportionate” treatments “with no other effect than maintaining life artificially.”

Lambert, 42, has been a tetraplegic and severely disabled for more than 10 years, after he sustained severe head injuries in a traffic accident in 2008.

Since then, Lambert has been at the center of a protracted court battle over whether to have his food and hydration removed. Lambert’s wife and six of his eight siblings have supported the removal of life support, while his parents have fought against it.

Vatican officials last month condemned the removal of food and hydration from Lambert.

In a joint statement May 21, Cardinal Kevin Farrell, prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, Family, and Life, and Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, president of the Pontifical Academy for Life, said the interruption of food and hydration entail a “serious violation of the dignity of the person.”

Lambert has been described by some medical professionals as being in a “vegetative state.” Farrell and Paglia stated that though this is a “serious pathological condition,” it does not in any way “compromise the dignity of the persons who are in this condition, nor their fundamental rights to life and care, understood as continuity of basic human assistance.”

Food and water, they continued, are a form of essential care, and do not comprise “unreasonable therapeutic obstinacy.”

The Catholic Church does not require the use of extraordinary means to preserve life, but considers the provision of food and hydration to be an ordinary standard of care.

“The suspension of [food and hydration] represents, rather, a form of abandonment of the patient, based on a merciless judgment on his quality of life, expression of a culture of waste that selects the most fragile and defenseless people, without recognizing their uniqueness and immense value,” Farrell and Paglia wrote.

They also expressed the hope that an effective solution for preserving the life of Lambert can be found, and pledged the prayers of Pope Francis and the Church for that intention.

In 2015, the European Court of Human Rights approved the removal of Lambert’s life support, arguing in a 12-5 decision, that the choice to stop his intravenous feeding did not violate European rights laws.

A lower French court had previously ruled that Lambert should continue to receive food and hydration. In January 2014 a panel of nine judges in Chalons-en-Champagne said removing food and hydration is “a grave and clearly illegal attack on the fundamental right to life.”

The panel added that Lambert is “neither sick nor at the end of his life.”

Pope Francis addressed Lambert’s case during a Regina Coeli address in April 2018. He asked for prayers for people such as Lambert, “who live, at times for a long period, in a serious state of illness, medically assisted for their basic needs.”

“Every offense or wound or violence against the body of our neighbor is an outrage to God the creator,” he said, adding that, “in the flesh of these people we find the flesh of Christ.”

Christ and Mary are First in the Order of God's Design

Fr. Andre speaks on Our Lady during the “Day With Mary” held at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Rockingham, Western Australia on 5 December 2015.

Catechism of St Pius X - The Lord's Prayer, The Third Petition

The Third Petition 

19 Q. What do we ask in the Third Petition: Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven?

A. In the Third Petition: Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven, we beg the grace to do the will of God in all things by obeying His Commandments as promptly as the Angels and Saints obey Him in Heaven; and we also beg the grace to correspond to divine inspirations and to live resigned to the will of God should He send us tribulations.

20 Q. Is it necessary to do the will of God?

A. It is as necessary to do the will of God as it is to work out our salvation, because Jesus Christ has said that they alone who have done the will of His Father shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.

21 Q. In what way can we know the will of God?

A. We can know the will of God especially by means of the Church and of the spiritual superiors appointed by God to guide us along the way of salvation; we may also learn His most holy will from the divine inspirations that come to us and from the very surroundings in which the Lord has placed us.

22 Q. Should we always recognise the will of God in adversity as well as in prosperity?

A. Both in prosperity and adversity we should always recognise the will of God, who directs or permits all things for our good.

(Tomorrow, The Lord's Prayer - The Fourth Petition)

Pius X, Pope St.. Catholic Catechism of Saint Pius X (1908) (pp. 47-48). Kindle Edition.

Word of the Day: Calixtines

CALIXTINES. A party of Hussites, also called Utraquists, who contended that the laity must receive Communion under both species, i.e., under the form of bread and also from the chalice (calix). They received ecclesiastical approval at the Prague Compacts of 1433, eighteen years after the death of John Hus (1369-1415), a Bohemian priest who was condemned by the Council of Constance and burned at the stake for heresy. Not all Calixtines, however, were heretics. They could be Catholics who took advantage of the Church's concession to receive the chalice but also believed that Holy Communion under both forms was not necessary for salvation.

The Curiosity of Immigrant Ownership in the United States

A fascinating look at the whys and wherefores of immigrant ownership in the US, and I know from experience that the same analysis applies to Canada.

From The Distributist Review 

By Phillip Campbell

In this essay we will consider an interesting social phenomenon in the United States whereby a very large number of small businesses across a variety of sectors are owned by first generation immigrants.

If you do not know what I mean, let me posit a few examples that are common, at least in the Midwest where I live. Hotels and motels are often owned by Indians. Diners are frequently under the ownership of eastern European families. Ownership of gas stations, party stores, and liquor stores are dominated by Arabs, either Muslim or Chaldean Christian. Nail salons are run by Asians. Other examples could be furnished from other regions of the United States.

Of course, these examples are not universal; there are many party stores that are not owned by Arabic speaking folk, of course. However, if these observations are not universally applicable, neither are they mere stereotypes without objective basis. There definitely is a preponderance of ownership in certain businesses among certain groups of foreigners, a kind of “ethnic concentration” in given professions.

Why is ownership of small business by immigrants such a common trend in the United States? (Don’t worry; this is not going to turn into a nationalist screed against immigrants or immigrant ownership.) I am more interested in the social question of why this pattern of ownership exists in the U.S. After all, looking at the question quantitatively, it does not make sense. On paper, a working-class immigrant should be the least likely individual to own a business. The obstacles are legion: language barriers, unfamiliarity with the complex network of local, state, and federal regulations, usually no credit or business history within the country, limited access to capital, etc. And yet there is a preponderance of ownership by these very individuals.

What explains this pattern of ownership? I think the crux of the issue is that these immigrants often come from countries where ownership of property is more distributed, and thus the expectation and desire of ownership is more universal. Countries like Albania, Iraq, and Cambodia do not have the large concentrations of commercial ownership that have become so regrettably common in the capitalist west. This is because they still have very traditional economies in many respects. Ownership of property is still distributed amongst a great many small shop owners, artisans, and local producers.

For example, I recently met a Vietnamese woman who showed me some pictures of a clothing store her family owned in Vietnam. The family lived in a two-story home on the main street of a medium sized town. Their shop was on the lower floor; the business opened up out into the street. The family lived on the upper floor. She told me that everybody in the town owned a shop of some sort: flowers, textiles, baked goods, vegetables, electronics, whatever. Each family had its own niche and its own shop. She lived on a street that was a kind of ‘textile row’ where many families had clothing stores clustered together.

The fact is, in smaller countries that do not have historic ties to western style capitalism, commercial centralization has not yet taken hold. Wal-Mart has not yet displaced the plethora of local grocers and retailers; hence property is still much more distributed, and thus the fact and ideal of ownership are more common. In Vietnam, it is simply assumed that each family will have a family business. Common people are used to the idea of ownership. They aspire for it. They work towards it. Thus, when they get to the United States, they come here with the mindset of ownership.

Contrast this with the mood of most Americans. How many American high school seniors say “When I grow up, I want to own a gas station”? When was the last time an industrious young American girl said “I want to operate a textile production operation out of my basement”? What American parents proudly announce at the dinner party that their son wants to run a motel? How many high school guidance counselors tell their student, “Jimmy, I think you should consider starting a party store”? What starry-eyed American youth dreams of one day managing a breakfast diner?

Of course, we know this simply doesn’t happen a lot. But why not? If Americans do not tend to aspire to ownership, what do they aspire to? The sad thing is that the capitalist mentality has conditioned Americans to aspire, not to ownership, but to secure positions in middle management—place holders in the bureaucracy. The focus of American professional development is not ownership, but rather developing the right “skill sets” that will make one “marketable” to a successful company. Success is not bound up with ownership, but with tying oneself to the success of a much bigger entity. Americans simply do not aspire to personal ownership; they prefer to find secure, salaried positions under the aegis of someone else’s ownership. It’s not a problem so much with material circumstances as much as with our preferences and desires.

This reflects a point made by Hilaire Belloc, that what is required is not necessarily a new economic program as much as a new way of thinking a “new mood”:
The restoration of Property must essentially be the product of a new mood, not a new scheme. It must grow from seed planted in the breast. It is too late to reinfuse it by design, and our efforts must everywhere be particular, local, and, in its origins at least, small.1
One other point: Notice that in the example of immigrant owned businesses, ownership is vested not in the individual so much as the family. The Chaldean who owns the party store runs it with his brothers and their children, as does the Albanian who owns the breakfast diner. The Vietnamese woman I mentioned who worked in a clothing shop out of her house did so with her family. Her father, mother, and siblings all worked together in what was essentially an exercise of familial ownership.

Besides being the heart of the Distributist vision—the family as the primary economic unit—familial ownership is the most basic sort of cooperative organization, whereby the resources of individuals are pooled together to bring forth an outcome much greater than what any individual could accomplish alone. This cooperative principle is at the heart of the Distributist ideal. It constitutes the functional principle of what makes Distributist ventures economically viable.

Are non-western economies like those found in Iraq, Cambodia, or Vietnam models of Distributist economies? Certainly not. A proposal to restructure the American economy in the image of that of Albania would rightfully be derided. These countries all have many serious problems, politically, culturally, and economically. That’s the whole reason many of them wish to emigrate to the West.

What is praiseworthy is not the material conditions or politics in these other countries, but the ownership mentality that a general distribution of ownership engenders. And this has to do not with the corrupt political systems that usually exist in such places; more often than not, it is due to the hardy remnants of traditional economies that have endured in spite of the destructive, imbecilic administration of tin-pot dictatorships.

Immigrant owned businesses in the United States exemplify what is possible for the common man when the right technological, educational, and financial resources and made available to people with an ownership mentality. Ultimately, for ownership to be more common, our mentality needs to change. We need to break out of the capitalist-induced mental lethargy that has our brightest minds aspiring to nothing more than cozy middle management and recapture an aspiration towards ownership.


  1. Belloc H. 1936, An Essay on the Restoration of Property, London, The Distributist League, p. 40.
Phillip Campbell holds a BA in European History from Ave Maria University and a certificate in Secondary Education from Madonna University. He has taught history, economics, and logic in several alternative educational institutions, most notably for Homeschool Connections. He is the author of several books and articles on historical subjects. Phillip served as Mayor of Howell, Michigan from 2011 to 2015. He resides in southern Michigan.

Last Words of Saint Louis IX, King of France, 1270

A short video about the advice St Louis IX gave his son as he lay dying in North Africa on Crusade. He was a Franciscan Tertiary, one of the greatest kings of the Middle Ages, and a  Saint worthy of emulation.

From one of my favourite YouTube channels, Real Crusades History.

30 June, Antonio, Cardinal Bacci: Meditations for Every Day

St. Paul the Apostle

1. St. Paul was by nature fiery and zealous. Once he discovered the truth, he was ready to die for it. Originally he was convinced that Judaism contained the whole truth, and for this reason he hated the Christians, whom he regarded as a sect which had corrupted the sacred Hebrew tradition. The deacon Stephen was the first victim of his persecuting zeal. As he was being stoned and beaten to death this saintly young man prayed for his persecutors. It may be that in this moment his eyes, shining with faith and love, encountered those of the man who hated him. Soon afterwards Saul (this was Paul's real name) left Jerusalem for Damascus carrying letters investing him with new powers for the persecution of the infant Church. On the way this headstrong but sincere enemy of Christianity was suddenly dazzled by a light from Heaven. He fell to the ground and heard a mysterious voice saying: “Saul, Saul, why dost thou persecute me?” Terrified, he answered: “Who art thou, Lord?” “I am Jesus,” the voice said, “whom thou art persecuting.” (Acts 9: 1-5) From that day Saul was changed completely. Under the influence of divine grace he became the Apostle of the Gentiles.

Before he set out on his missionary journeys Paul went apart into the desert of Arabia, (Cf. Gal. 1:17) where he remained some time in prayer and recollection. Then he went to Jerusalem to pay homage to the Prince of the Apostles, St. Peter (Gal. 1:18). After this he began his apostolic travels, in the course of which he encountered all kinds of hardship and danger. The Jews frequently hunted him in order to put him to death. He was often cruelly scourged and flung into prison, and several times he was shipwrecked and had miraculous escapes from death. (Cf. 2 Cor. 11: 23-27) He bore everything joyfully however, in order to prove his love for Jesus Christ. Charity was always his main incentive. “The love of Christ impels us.” (2 Cor. 5:14) Charity, he said himself, “believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” (Cf. 1 Cor. 13:4-13) His charity was so great that he could truthfully say: “Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to stumble, and I am not inflamed?” (2 Cor. 11:29)

St. Paul could make this claim because his heart had become identified with the Heart of Jesus. Therefore he could say: “It is now no longer I that live, but Christ lives in me;” (Gal. 2:20) and: “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain;” (Phil. 1:21) and: “I am hard pressed from both sides - desiring to depart and to be with Christ, a lot by far the better; yet to stay on in the flesh is necessary for your sake.” (Phil. 1:23-24)

Let us meditate on this ardent love of God. Let us cast aside our coldness and indifference and ask St. Paul to set us on fire with divine charity.

2. We can learn other virtues from St. Paul besides his zealous love for God and for his fellowmen. We can also learn from him the virtues of humility and of apostolic fervour. The Apostle of the Gentiles reached such heights of sanctity as to feel himself transformed into Christ Himself and to deserve to be taken up into the third Heaven where he enjoyed a foretaste of eternal happiness. Nevertheless, he considered himself unworthy to be called an Apostle and realised that all his gifts came to him from God. “Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think anything, as from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God.” (2 Cor. 3:5) Whenever we succeed in any project we should think on the same lines, because it is only when we are humble and depend on the grace of God that the success of our actions will redound to the glory of our Creator. If the cancer of ambition or of self-love should corrupt our purity of intention, our work would not be blessed by God and would not make us worthy of everlasting life. Let us repeat often: "All for You, with You and in You, my God."

3. "Always breathe the life of Christ; place your trust in Him; and live as if every day were your last." (St. Athanasius, "Life of St. Anthony," n. 91)


IN LUMINE FIDEI: 30 JUNE – THE APOSTLE SAINT PAUL (Martyr): Dom Prosper Gueranger: Whereas the Greeks on this day are uniting in one Solemnity, “the Memory,” as they express it, “of the illust...


IN LUMINE FIDEI: 30 JUNE – THIRD SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST: Dom Prosper Gueranger: The faithful soul has witnessed, through the sacred Liturgy, the close of the mysteries of our Redemption which w...

30 June, A Chesterton Calendar

JUNE 30th

There are thrilling moments, doubtless, for the spectator, the amateur, and the æsthete; but there is one thrill that is known only to the soldier who fights for his own flag, to the ascetic who starves himself for his own illumination, to the lover who makes finally his own choice. And it is this transfiguring self-discipline that makes the vow a truly sane thing. It must have satisfied even the giant hunger of the soul of a lover or a poet to know that in consequence of some one instant of decision that strange chain would hang for centuries in the Alps among the silences of stars and snows. All around us is the city of small sins, abounding in backways and retreats; but surely, sooner or later, the towering flame will rise from the harbour announcing that the reign of the cowards is over and a man is burning his ships.

‘The Defendant.’

Chesterton, G. K.. The G. K. Chesterton Collection [50 Books] (Kindle Locations 44470-44477). Catholic Way Publishing. Kindle Edition.

1 July, The Roman Martyrology

Kaléndis Iúlii Luna vicesima nona Anno Domini 2019

On the morrow is the Octave of the Birth of the holy Baptist John. 
July 1st 2019, the 29th day of the Moon, was born into the better life: 

On Mount Hor, holy Aaron, the first High Priest of the tribe of Levi. 
In Britain, the holy martyrs Julius and Aaron, who suffered in the persecution under Diocletian, after holy Alban at the which time there were very many there who suffered divers torments and were most cruelly mangled, and so finished their fight, and went to be glad for ever in the Jerusalem which is above. 
At Mondragone, in Latium, the holy Bishops Castus and Secundinus, both martyrs. 
At Vienne, holy Martin, Bishop [of that see,] a disciple of the Apostles. 
In Auvergne, [in the sixth century,] holy Gallus, Bishop [of Clermont.] 
In the country of Lyon, the holy Domitian, Abbot [of Bebron,] the first who there led an hermit's life. He gathered very many together there to serve God, and was gathered unto his fathers in a good old age, very famous for great graces, and for glorious and wonderful works. 
In the country of Reims, the holy Priest Theodoric, a disciple of blessed Bishop Rémy. 
At Angoulême, [in the sixth century,] the holy Abbot Eparchius. 
At Hums, in Syria, [likewise in the sixth century,] the holy Confessor Simeon, whose surname was Sali. He became a fool for Christ's sake, but God showed by great miracles how deep was his wisdom. 
At Vicenza, [in the eleventh century,] the holy Hermit Theobald, of the family of the Earls of Campania, whose name Pope Alexander III added to the list of the Saints on account of his fame for holiness and miracles. 
V. And elsewhere many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.
R. Thanks be to God.

Memes of the Day

29 June 2019

US Bishop Promotes ‘Celebration of Pride’ With Prayer Card, Rainbow Crucifix

He's also one of the apostate false shepherds that supports the Association of US Catholic Priests (AUSCP) which is calling for 'ordaining' women.

From LifeSiteNews

By Doug Mainwaring

June 28, 2019, (LifeSiteNews) – A U.S. bishop has issued a “prayer” card that celebrates homosexual “pride” and includes an image of a crucifix with rainbow colors coming from it. The card, to be distributed this weekend at pro-homosexual events, was released via social media on Friday, the feast day on which Catholics celebrate the Sacred Heart of Jesus. 
Pro-homosexual Bishop John Stowe of Lexington, Kentucky, issued the card to commemorate the “celebration of Pride.” The prayer card features a San Damiano Cross on the front, and on the back is a brief letter issued to those who celebrate “Pride.”

“Dear sisters and Brothers, I greet you warmly and offer you my prayers on your behalf during this celebration of Pride,” wrote Stowe on the back of the card, which includes a rainbow flag with the words “You are God’s beloved” imposed on top of the flag
The remainder of the card suggests that God creates people to be homosexual and transgendered, etc., and that God looks at such “works” as “wonderful.” 
Psalm 139, a prayer attributed to King David, celebrates God’s intimate knowledge and deep love of each son and daughter he has made in his image and likeness.
In part, the psalm reads, “you formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother’s womb.  I praise you, so wonderfully you made me; wonderful are your works!”  (Psalm 139:13-14) New American Bible)
My prayer is that each of us can celebrate that glorious discovery of how we are made and loved by God who knows us intimately and who calls us to a deeper relationship with Himself.
When we acknowledge this in ourselves, we have to be able to see this beauty in each other. There are so many things which can divide us, let’s all come together in the recognition that we are wonderfully made and we are made to reflect the glory of God.
Peace and all good,
Bishop John Stowe, OFM Conv.
Catholic Diocese of Lexington
“With Lexington Pride underway, I am grateful for the presence of people of faith reaching out to those who have been turned away or felt rejected by the Church. Our arms are open to all who seek the Lord with good will!” the bishop commented on Twitter. 
Learn more about Bishop Stowe’s views and past actions by visiting FaithfulShepherds.com. Click here.

The Catholic Church teaches that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered” since they are “contrary to the natural law” and they “close the sexual act to the gift of life.”
“Under no circumstances can they be approved,” states the Catechism of the Catholic Church (para. 2357).
The Church also teaches that same-sex attraction itself is “objectively disordered” since God created sexual attraction to be between a male and female for the sake of procreation. The Church teaches that God does not make people homosexual. 
“Two persons of the same sex sin gravely when they seek venereal pleasure from each other (see Lev 18:22; Lev 20:13; Rom 1:24-28; 1 Cor 6:9-10; 1 Tim 1:10; Jude 7),” states the “Declaration of Truths” recently released by some cardinals and bishops in the Catholic Church. 
“Hence, the opinion is contrary to natural law and Divine Revelation that says that, as God the Creator has given to some humans a natural disposition to feel sexual desire for persons of the opposite sex, so also He has given to others a natural disposition to feel sexual desire for persons of the same sex, and that God intends that the latter disposition be acted on in some circumstances,” they add. 
The Church teaches that everybody, including those with a disordered sexuality — often expressing itself in lust, masturbation, fornication, pornography, homosexuality — are called to chastity, that is to the moral virtue of a rightly ordered sexuality integrated within the person. The Christian faith holds that homosexual acts, along with murdering the innocent, depriving a laborer of his wages, and oppressing the poor, are one of the four sins that cry to heaven for justice. 
Pro-homosexual priest Fr. James Martin promoted the card on social media, noting that the bishop “marks #PrideMonth in his Diocese” by means of the card.
The late Pope Saint John Paul II in 2000 spoke strongly against a pro-homosexual "pride" parade that marched through the streets of Rome, calling it an “offense” to Christian values.
''In the name of the Church of Rome I can only express my deep sadness at the affront to the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000 and the offence to the Christian values of a city that is so dear to the hearts of Catholics throughout the world,'' he told pilgrims in a Sunday July 9 message one day after thousands had marched in the event. The Pope then went on to reaffirm Church teaching on homosexuality, stating that the Church "cannot be silent about the truth, because she would fail in her fidelity to God the Creator and would not help to distinguish good from evil.''
Stowe famously dissents from Church teaching on homosexuality, has a record of collaborating with a group that rejects Catholic moral teaching, and has indicated that individual parishes in his diocese may decide if they want to promote the homosexual cause.
Stowe is one of five bishops who endorsed Fr. James Martin, SJ’s book, “Building a Bridge,” and was also a featured speaker not long ago at a conference for New Ways Ministry. The gathering was titled “Justice and Mercy Shall Kiss: LGBT Catholics in the Age of Pope Francis.” 
New Ways Ministry was condemned in 2010 by then-president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, and in 2011 by Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl, USCCB chairman of the Committee on Doctrine. Additionally, in 1999 the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith “permanently prohibited” the group’s co-founders, Sister Jeannine Gramick and Father Robert Nugent, “from any pastoral work involving homosexual persons,” after ruling that their teaching was “erroneous and dangerous” and “doctrinally unacceptable.”
Editor's note: Pete Baklinski contributed to this report.