Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

The Mass: public or private?

May 26th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Note: the following discussion uses the contemporary (Covid-19 plague) jargon related to private and public Masses. While it is true that the words “sine populo” (“without the people”) has been used in the past to mean a private Mass, in practice the ‘understanding’ of the words has changed since March 17th, when the Catholic Church herself began using the words ‘public’ and ‘private’ to express with more clarity what the people have been experiencing.  It seems doubtful that the prior usage will return among the laity.

When a priest celebrates Mass, and locks the doors so no one else can get in, we call it a PRIVATE Mass.

When a priest celebrates Mass with unlocked doors, open to the world, we call it a PUBLIC Mass, even if no one shows up.

What is it called when a priest celebrates Mass and permits 9 other people to attend, in a locked Church to which no one else will be admitted? Semi-private? Semi-public?

No. It is still a private Mass as the laity understands it. Let’s not be misled by the illusion that many churches now have “public Masses.” No, they do not. They still are having private Masses which almost nobody is allowed to attend. And the people not admitted may feel worse than when nobody else was admitted.

 

It doesn’t matter if locking doors is on the priest’s own initiative, or on his bishop’s order, or on order of the governor of a state or the mayor of a backwater town. When Mass is being said with the doors locked, and you are on the outside and unable to get in, it is a private Mass and you are not invited. Let’s not complicate reality by calling those Masses “public,” as if progress had been made. Personal credibility demands we speak the truth.

What do you think? Some bishops are voluntarily delaying another week or two for often undisclosed reasons. Kudos to the ones objecting to the government’s man-handling the sacred worship, and creating distraction from the holy. Better that the bottom line should be “We will again hold public Mass when we are really ready to do so without compromise and with proper obedience and reverence to what the Catholic Church defines Mass should be.”

When President Trump called for the opening of churches last Friday, May 22, he said he was addressing the need of  ‘millions’ of people. He certainly won’t be getting access for “millions” at 10 people per church!

So you want to do more?

Here’s an idea: how about having a Mass said in Thanksgiving for Donald Trump’s forcing the reopening of Churches?

 

 

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TX Bp: “Catholics can’t vote for pro-abort candidates”

May 26th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

 

Abortion advocates ‘not acceptable for leadership in our society’

TYLER, Texas (ChurchMilitant.com) –  EXCERPTS: “The most important foundational teaching and principle of Catholic Social Teaching is that every human life is sacred from conception to natural death,” says  Bp. Joseph Strickland of Tyler TX . “… they have an inherent dignity at every age and stage of their lives. … This truth is what informs our respect for every human life, whether that life is found in the first home of the womb, a wheelchair, a jail cell, a hospital room, a hospice, a senior center, a soup kitchen or on a refugee boat,” the bishop teaches.

Strickland provides an answer to those who consider abortion simply one issue among many in the world of politics. “The Right to Life position is, in one sense, not about an ‘issue’ at all,” he says. “The Pro-Life position is also a worldview, a lens through which we should view every political, cultural, social, and economic issue,” he continues, touching on the supernatural virtue of faith. “It should inform every aspect of our participation in society, especially the exercise of our citizenship.” That exercise of citizenship includes voting. Strickland recognizes that voting is a moral act, … not exempt from moral judgment.

“… it is impossible to enjoy any right without life.” The bishop’s words match the logic of the Declaration of Independence … life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness: One cannot pursue happiness without liberty, and one cannot enjoy liberty without life.

“Every procured abortion is the taking of innocent human life and is always and everywhere intrinsically immoral,” Strickland continues. “… there are no possible intentions or circumstances that could ever make the act of abortion good or morally acceptable. “Our absolute opposition to legalized abortion must be the first of the pre-eminent issues we consider in voting…”  Any candidate or political party which promotes abortion is precluded from any further consideration for a Catholic voter.  Even if a voter likes a candidate’s views on health care, immigration, education, taxes and the economy,  if the candidate supports abortion they are disqualified.

Strickland underscores the truth that people with good will and a well formed conscience could not possibly vote for someone who supports killing the innocent — at any stage of life. Hence, he notes, it is unacceptable for a Catholic to vote for someone who supports abortion.

https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/bp-strickland-catholics-must-not-vote-for-pro-abortion-candidates

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Trump to gov’s: Open the Churches!

May 22nd, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris
When we read through the following LifeSiteNews coverage, it quickly becomes obvious that 10 people in a church which holds hundreds is not what President Trump has in mind when he focuses on “millions of Americans” to whom he is responding and for whom he is reopening their Churches. If the Catholic Church settles for such crumbs under the table, for our Lord and Savior being mishandled as tokenism and as if He were a contagious disease, the Church will regret that move for generations. Trump called for an immediate opening; i.e. THIS weekend, May 23-24, 2020. We must not miss fully responding to such a vital offer, while we still have time.

Trump demands states let churches re-open: ‘If they don’t do it, I will override the governors’

‘The people are demanding to go to church and synagogue, go to their mosque – many millions of Americans embrace worship as an essential part of life,’ said Trump.

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – President Donald Trump today declared houses of worship “essential places that provide essential services,” saying they should be opened up right away and governors who get in the way will have to answer to him.

“Some governors have deemed liquor stores and abortion clinics as essential but have left out churches and other houses of worship. It’s not right,” said Trump. “So I’m correcting this injustice and calling houses of worship essential. The people are demanding to go to church and synagogue, go to their mosque – many millions of Americans embrace worship as an essential part of life.”

Many people of faith have complained that draconian coronavirus lockdowns unfairly targeted churches. Pastors who have held “parking lot” services during which parishioners stayed in their cars have been fined. One California county banned singing during live-streamed church services. When the Knoxville, Tennessee government began to allow people to go to church again, it told churches, “[t]he physical taking of communion/sacrament should not be performed due to the serial breaking of physical distancing across a congregation.” Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan banned Catholic priests from going within six feet of their parishioners.

In Virginia, Lighthouse Fellowship conducted a worship service with a congregation of 16 people practicing so-called social distancing in a facility that seats more than 200. The pastor faces a year in jail and/or a $2,500 fine. The Trump administration Department of Justice issued a Statement of Interest siding with the church, writing, “there is no pandemic exception to the Constitution and its Bill of Rights.”

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy even told Tucker Carlson that he “wasn’t thinking of the Bill of Rights” when he banned religious gatherings. “That’s above my paygrade,” he said.The governor defended keeping liquor stores open while closing churches as important to his citizens’ mental health.  Shutting down liquor stores would have led to “unintended mental health and addiction prices to pay, unintended consequences,” he said.  A rabbi and a Catholic priest are suing Murphy over his order. A number of lawsuits in other states have been filed as well.

Trump emphasized, “I call upon governors to allow our churches and places of worship to open right now. If there’s any question, they’re gonna have to call me, but they’re not gonna be successful in that call. These are places that hold our society together and keep our people united.”

Trump began his press conference by thanking the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and saying the CDC would be releasing guidelines for religious gatherings soon. He said he trusts faith leaders to take proper steps to protect the health of their congregations.

“The ministers, pastors, rabbis, imams, and other faith leaders will make sure that their congregations are safe as they gather and pray,” said Trump. “I know them well. They love their congregations. They love their people. They don’t want anything bad to happen to them or to anybody else.”

He concluded, “The governors need to do the right thing and allow these very important essential places of faith to open right now, for this weekend. If they don’t do it, I will override the governors. In America, we need more prayer, not less.”

While many Protestant churches have responded to the coronavirus panic and subsequent shutdowns with “parking lot” services, every single Catholic diocese in the U.S. cancelled public Masses and some even banned the Last Rites. Dioceses around the country are slowly beginning to open their churches back up, although Holy Communion and other sacraments remain inaccessible to millions of American Catholics. The Catholic bishops of Minnesota along with Lutheran leaders announced this week that they will resume worship services on May 26 despite Governor Walz’s current COVID-19 executive order which allows retailers to operate at 50 percent capacity but caps church worship services at 10 people. They are backed by the lawyers at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty.

In California, hundreds of pastors plan to defy Gov. Gavin Newsom’s ban on religious gatherings on May 31.

https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/trump-deems-churches-essential-demands-governors-allow-them-to-reopen-immediately?utm_source=LifeSiteNews.com&utm_campaign=becacbc1fc-Daily%2520Headlines%2520-%2520U.S._COPY_766&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_12387f0e3e-becacbc1fc-401405341

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What day is it?

May 21st, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

“What day is it?” is one of the first questions the medical screener in the emergency room might ask to see if the patient is well-oriented. So, too, a post surgical nurse might ask the same question to assess recovery. And the medic evaluating an accident victim at the site might ask something similar to help with the triage. The right answer matters. However, if confronted by such a question next Sunday, a few days from now, it might be a head-scratching experience for the medic to hear “Well it must be Ascension Thursday!”

Ash Wednesday can’t be on a Saturday. Holy Thursday can’t be on a Sunday. And certainly there is only one day of the week for Good Friday and Easter Sunday. Right?

Except, apparently, for Ascension Thursday. Today.  A Solemnity. In many dioceses it is celebrated not on Thursday, 40 days after Christ’s Resurrection, but on the following Sunday, 43 days later.  And that makes Pentecost 7 days after the Ascension rather than 10, which leaves not enough time for the first 9-day novena!

I am grateful that is one change that the Diocese of Rochester hasn’t made. Rather than argue from Scripture or even Hebrew tradition, it seems more important to wonder about WHY Thursday was moved to Sunday. Until a much more profound excuse is offered, I’ll retain the opinion that it seems more for the convenience of man than of honoring God. Are those who bemoaned losing Masses for most of Lent and Eastertide now pleased to have one less Mass of Obligation?  Today is a good day to examine conscience on that question, as practice so often degrades to making our lives simpler and giving less to God.

For those interested in not getting a two-fer on Sunday, here is a link to a 7PM Mass tonight celebrating Ascension Thursday.

https://youtu.be/xCHD9YEoGio

Why not post your own links to your local Ascension Thursday Mass?

And for those who wonder if Thursday isn’t on Sunday, what is? The answer is “The 7th Sunday of Easter.”

 

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Msgr. Charles Pope’s thoughtful call to restart public Masses

May 18th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

https://www.lifesitenews.com/opinion/we-cant-let-coronavirus-fear-paralyze-our-society-time-to-resume-public-masses?utm_source=LifeSiteNews.com&utm_campaign=337e1082dc-Daily%2520Headlines%2520-r%2520U.S._COPY_762&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_12387f0e3e-337e1082dc-401405341

Msgr. Charles Pope, well known for his regular appearances on EWTN’s Morning Glory Show, was himself a serious victim earlier this year of COVID-19 (which we should be regularly calling a plague instead of just a ‘virus’). He has had plenty of opportunity and understanding to have an opinion on the reopening of Holy Mass to the public.  LifeSiteNews has covered Msgr. Pope’s recommendations here.

It is time now for Cleansing Fire’s readers to begin offering their opinions and concerns. Please read the full article re Msgr. Pope first; it will help our communication. Especially (but not solely) I extend that offer to our followers in the Diocese of Rochester, NY, where CF first sprang up with its own voice a decade ago. Time to input on restarting Masses for the flock is now.

In the next few days, I also will offer some thoughts, but don’t want to hold up dissemination of Msgr. Pope’s writing while I do my own.

Excerpts from Msgr. Pope’s Call to resume public Masses

“I accept that some degree of protective measures is necessary to protect the vulnerable and to minimize the spread of the disease…. I am sympathetic … that the ‘cure should not be worse than the disease.’”

“For a Catholic, living means the Holy Mass, receiving the sacraments and gathering for communal worship.” … we must face our fears and accept that illness, suffering and death are a part of life in this world we call “Paradise Lost.” Life is filled with countless risks; …. To be cognizant of risks and to try to minimize them is wise but to avoid all risk is neither possible nor healthy.”

” For believers, trusting in God’s care and in what he has provided to keep us healthy plays an important part in overcoming our fear.”

“We have to accept the hard truth that people die. They die of many things, COVID-19 among them…. It is alarming to me as a priest and believer how little we as a Church have had to say about death. Death is a reality, but it is not something we should excessively fear. Christ

Msgr. Charles Pope

conquered death and made it a doorway to the glory of Heaven for the faithful.”

“We all have a natural fear of death, especially the dying process itself, but as Christians we are taught to confront and conquer our fear of death. The grace to do so has been given to us by Christ…. Death is not the end; it is a birth unto new life. For the faithful Christian, the day of our death is the greatest day of our life.” 

“… far more than grieving is going on in this current situation. What we have today is a gripping fear that so dreads suffering and death that almost everything else must be sacrificed…. Much of this, I am convinced, is because in this increasingly secular world, suffering and death have lost their meaning.”

“… the widespread, gripping fear in the face of this virus is unprecedented in my lifetime. I have never seen anything like it. Its worldwide scope tells me that it is demonic in origin, and thus the Church must speak more vigorously to exorcize the demons of fear. Instead we have remained strangely quiet.”

“We have allowed … bullying and misrepresentation of our views to silence us… the paralyzing fear manifest in the news reports and displayed by many Americans is destructive as well as unbecoming.”

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Please read the whole article at the link first shown above.

I will only add here, for now, that Msgr. Pope’s identification of paralysis by fear of death is a good explanation, IMO, of the frozen inability to act soundly by many prelates, who fail themselves, their priests, their missions and their flocks by essentially doing nothing, and would prefer to be led by the leash of government around their necks than by their own defective or cowardly consciences. See open letter to the bishops who have shut down their dioceses: https://fromrome.info/2020/03/18/open-letter-to-the-bishops-who-have-shut-down-their-dioceses/

More soon. 

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Heresy among the Hierarchy? Part IV: vs. Ezekiel et al

May 16th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

While not offering as many relevant verses as Jeremiah, Ezekiel’s words are no less graphic. In Chapter 5, verses 9 -11, although the words we are searching (plague[s] and pestilence[s] and famine[s]) do not specifically occur, how can anyone doubt that the reference in those three introductory verses is to cannibalism, resulting from famine? What is unique in verse 9 is something which God promises never to do again, just like He promises in Genesis never again to destroy the world with flood. He has said he will not unleash again the dire straits of eating human flesh. But He has not made any promises to withhold plague, pestilence and famine.

Eze 5:9-11

“And because of all your abominations I will do with you what I have never yet done, and the like of which I will never do again. Therefore fathers shall eat their sons in the midst of you, and sons shall eat their fathers; and I will execute judgments on you, and any of you who survive I will scatter to all the winds.Wherefore, as I live, says the Lord GOD, surely, because you have defiled My sanctuary with all your detestable things and with all your abominations, therefore I will cut you down; My eye will not spare, and I will have no pity.”

Eze 5:12

“A third part of you shall die of pestilence and be consumed with famine in the midst of you; a third part shall fall by the sword round about you; and a third part I will scatter to all the winds and will unsheathe the sword after them.”

Eze 5:16-17

“… when I loose against you my deadly arrows of famine, arrows for destruction, which I will loose to destroy you, and when I bring more and more famine upon you, and break your staff of bread. I will send famine and wild beasts against you, and they will rob you of your children; pestilence and blood shall pass through you; and I will bring the sword upon you. I, the LORD, have spoken.”

 Eze 6:11-12

“Thus says the Lord GOD: ‘Clap your hands, and stamp your foot, and say, Alas! because of all the evil abominations of the house of Israel; for they shall fall by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence. He that is far off shall die of pestilence; and he that is near shall fall by the sword; and he that is left and is preserved shall die of famine. Thus I will spend my fury upon them.”

Eze 7:15

“The sword is without, pestilence and famine are within; he that is in the field dies by the sword; and him that is in the city famine and pestilence devour.”

Eze 12:16

“But I will let a few of them escape from the sword, from famine and pestilence, that they may confess all their abominations among the nations where they go, and may know that I am the LORD.”

 Eze 14:13

“Son of man, when a land sins against me by acting faithlessly, and I stretch out my hand against it, and break its staff of bread and send famine upon it, and cut off from it man and beast, ….”

 Eze 14:19

“Or if I send a pestilence into that land, and pour out my wrath upon it with blood, to cut off from it man and beast; ….”

 Eze 14:21

“For thus says the Lord GOD: How much more when I send upon Jerusalem my four sore acts of judgment, sword, famine, evil beasts, and pestilence, to cut off from it man and beast!”

 Eze 28:23

“… for I will send pestilence into her, and blood into her streets; and the slain shall fall in the midst of her, by the sword that is against her on every side. Then they will know that I am the LORD.”

 Eze 33:27

“Say this to them, Thus says the Lord GOD: As I live, surely those who are in the waste places shall fall by the sword; and him that is in the open field I will give to the beasts to be devoured; and those who are in strongholds and in caves shall die by pestilence.”

 Eze 36:29-30

[God’s promises in reconciliation:] “And I will deliver you from all your uncleannesses; and I will summon the grain and make it abundant and lay no famine upon you. I will make the fruit of the tree and the increase of the field abundant, that you may never again suffer the disgrace of famine among the nations.”

 Eze 38:22

[Regarding judgment upon Gog:] “With pestilence and bloodshed I will enter into judgment with him; and I will rain upon him and his hordes and the many peoples that are with him, torrential rains and hailstones, fire and brimstone.”

 

Other Prophets

The final major prophet we mention is Daniel, but none of those word searches mention plague, pestilence or famine. But there are mentions in seven verses among the four minor prophets: Hosea, Amos and Habakkuk and Zechariah. Of particular interest in these times of closed churches and missing Masses, we might ask if Amos’ prophecy isn’t already coming true, that we have a famine of hearing the words of the Lord?

 

Amo 4:10

“I sent among you a pestilence after the manner of Egypt; I slew your young men with the sword; I carried away your horses; and I made the stench of your camp go up into your nostrils; yet you did not return to me,” says the LORD.”

 Amo 8:11

“‘Behold, the days are coming,’ says the Lord GOD, ‘when I will send a famine on the land; not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD.'”

 Hos 13:14

“Shall I ransom them from the power of Sheol? Shall I redeem them from Death? O Death, where are your plagues? O Sheol, where is your destruction? Compassion is hid from My eyes.”

 Hab 3:5

“Before him went pestilence, and plague followed close behind.”

 Zec 14:12

“And this shall be the plague with which the LORD will smite all the peoples that wage war against Jerusalem: their flesh shall rot while they are still on their feet, their eyes shall rot in their sockets, and their tongues shall rot in their mouths.”

 Zec 14:15

“And a plague like this plague shall fall on the horses, the mules, the camels, the asses, and whatever beasts may be in those  camps.”

 Zec 14:18

“And if the family of Egypt do not go up and present themselves, then upon them shall come the plague with which the LORD  afflicts the nations that do not go up to keep the feast of booths.”

 

Some thoughts about Malachi

The last nearly 500 years before Christ have a lack of Prophets, at least preserved in the Scriptures. Zechariah is one of the last ones in Judah; Malachi is generally considered the last. His famous prophecy is one we hear during Advent: “Behold, I send My messenger to prepare the way before Me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to His temple; the messenger of the covenant in whom you delight, behold, He is coming, says the LORD of hosts.” (Malachi 3:1) But, while descriptive of the Nativity, the words of Malachi are perhaps also descriptive of the second coming of Christ.

The next verse (Malachi 3:2) states:  “But who can endure the day of His coming, and who can stand when He appears?” The same sins of old which provoked God’s causing pestilence and famine are not far from the door of His People today. Abortion is clearly a charge against all of mankind (in what has been done, and in what has not been done), and deserving of punishment, i.e. a ‘cleansing’ before He comes. Perhaps the current plague has somewhat of this kind of role?

If we are obedient to His Laws, the Lord will “rebuke the devourer.” (Malachi 3:11: I will rebuke the devourer for you, so that it will not destroy the fruits of your soil; and your vine in the field shall not fail to bear, says the LORD of hosts.) The ‘devourer’ is the locust and a key element of famine. In the past year, through Africa and up into China, the locusts have been out of control and crops are destroyed.

Similarly, Malachi uses a famine sort of language for preparation for the second coming of the Lord: “For behold, the day comes, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble; the day that comes shall burn them up, says the LORD of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch.” (Malachi 4:1) When we get to Revelation in this multi-part study, we will see an echo of these words.

Sword, plague, pestilence, famine.  We are all in the Hands of God.

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Heresy among the Hierarchy? Part III: vs. Jeremiah

May 13th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

There is perhaps no better prophet to look to in focusing on the split between faithful priests who serve the flock and the selfish shepherds (the false prophets) who exploit the sheep and ridicule the faithful. So, it is not a surprise to have a plethora of warnings regarding plague, pestilence and famine in the Book of the Prophet Jeremiah. The following quotes are a bit repetitious but that is fully appropriate, as the LORD gave them many warnings, ordering clearly that they surrender to the King of Babylon or be subjected to the sword, plague and famine; but the people refused, led astray by the “prophecy” of all but Jeremiah whom they derided. Are not the false prophets reminiscent of the Catholic Church Prelates of today who publicly lead the people astray when they aver that God does not send plague and pestilence? Who else but God has this much power over the entire earth at the same time, who can unleash it (let it be unleashed) or stop it up? Is there any basis to think that famine will not follow such a pandemic?

Jer 5:12

“They [the false prophets] have spoken falsely of the LORD, and have said, ‘He will do nothing; no evil will come upon us, nor shall we see sword or famine.”

 Jer 11:22

“… therefore thus says the LORD of hosts: ‘Behold, I will punish them; the young men shall die by the sword; their sons and their daughters shall die by famine; ….'”

 Jer 14:12,13 and 15.16

Though they fast, I will not hear their cry, and though they offer burnt offering and cereal offering, I will not accept them; but I will consume them by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence.”  Then I said: ‘Ah, Lord GOD, behold, the prophets say to them, ‘You shall not see the sword, nor shall you have famine, but I will give you assured peace in this place’.'” … “Therefore thus says the LORD concerning the prophets who prophesy in My Name although I did not send them, and who say, ‘Sword and famine shall not come on this land’: By sword and famine those prophets shall be consumed.’ And the people to whom they prophesy shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem, victims of famine and sword, with none to bury them–them, their wives, their sons, and their daughters. For I will pour out their wickedness upon them.'”

 Jer 14:18

“If I go out into the field, behold, those slain by the sword! And if I enter the city, behold, the diseases of famine! For both prophet and priest ply their trade through the land, and have no knowledge.”

 Jer 15:2

“And when they ask you, ‘Where shall we go?’ you shall say to them, Thus says the LORD: ‘Those who are for pestilence, to pestilence, and those who are for the sword, to the sword; those who are for famine, to famine, and those who are for captivity, to captivity.”‘

 Jer 16:4

“They shall die of deadly diseases. They shall not be lamented, nor shall they be buried; they shall be as dung on the surface of the ground. They shall perish by the sword and by famine, and their dead bodies shall be food for the birds of the air and for the beasts of the earth.”

 Jer 18:21

“Therefore deliver up their children to famine; give them over to the power of the sword, let their wives become childless and widowed. May their men meet death by pestilence, their youths be slain by the sword in battle.”

Jer 21:6-7 “And I will smite the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast; they shall die of a great pestilenceAfterward, says the LORD, I will give Zedeki’ah king of Judah, and his servants, and the people in this city who survive the pestilence, sword, and famine, into the hand of Nebuchadrez’zar king of Babylon and into the hand of their enemies, into the hand of those who seek their lives. He shall smite them with the edge of the sword; he shall not pity them, or spare them, or have compassion.”

 Jer 21:9

He who stays in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence; but he who goes out and surrenders to the Chalde’ans who are besieging you shall live and shall have his life as a prize of war.”

Jer 24:10

“And I will send sword, famine, and pestilence upon them, until they shall be utterly destroyed from the land which I gave to them and their fathers.”

Jer 27:8

“But if any nation or kingdom will not serve this Nebuchadnez’zar king of Babylon, and put its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, I will punish that nation with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence, says the LORD, until I have consumed it by his hand.”

 Jer 27:13

“Why will you and your people die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence, as the LORD has spoken concerning any nation which will not serve the king of Babylon?”

 Jer 28:8

“The prophets who preceded you and me from ancient times prophesied war, famine, and pestilence against many countries and great kingdoms.”

Jer 29:17-18

“Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘Behold, I am sending on them sword, famine, and pestilence, and I will make them like vile figs which are so bad they cannot be eaten. I will pursue them with sword, famine, and pestilence, and will make them a horror to all the kingdoms of the earth, to be a curse, a terror, a hissing, and a reproach among all the nations where I have driven them’, ….”

Jer 32:24

“Behold, the siege mounds have come up to the city to take it, and because of sword and famine and pestilence the city is given into the hands of the Chalde’ans who are fighting against it. What thou didst speak has come to pass, and behold, thou seest it.” 

 Jer 32:36

“Now therefore thus says the LORD, the God of Israel, concerning this city of which you say, ‘It is given into the hand of the king of Babylon by sword, by famine, and by pestilence‘: ….”

 Jer 34:17

“Therefore, thus says the LORD: You have not obeyed Me by proclaiming liberty, every one to his brother and to his neighbor; behold, I proclaim to you liberty to the sword, to pestilence, and to famine, says the LORD. I will make you a horror to all the kingdoms of the earth.”

 Jer 38:2

“Thus says the LORD, He who stays in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence; but he who goes out to the Chalde’ans shall live; he shall have his life as a prize of war, and live.”

Jer 42:16

“… then the sword which you fear shall overtake you there in the land of Egypt; and the famine of which you are afraid shall follow hard after you to Egypt; and there you shall die.”

 Jer 42:17

“All the men who set their faces to go to Egypt to live there shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence; they shall have no remnant or survivor from the evil which I will bring upon them.”

 Jer 42:22

“Now therefore know for a certainty that you shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence in the place where you desire to go to live.”

 Jer 43:11

“He shall come and smite the land of Egypt, giving to the pestilence those who are doomed to the pestilence, to captivity those who are doomed to captivity, and to the sword those who are doomed to the sword.”

 Jer 44:12,13

“I will take the remnant of Judah who have set their faces to come to the land of Egypt to live, and they shall all be consumed; in the land of Egypt they shall fall; by the sword and by famine they shall be consumed; from the least to the greatest, they shall die by the sword and by famine; and they shall become an execration, a horror, a curse, and a taunt. I will punish those who dwell in the land of Egypt, as I have punished Jerusalem, with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence, ….”

 Jer 44:18

“But since we left off burning incense to the queen of heaven [an idol] and pouring out libations to her, we have lacked everything and have been consumed by the sword and by famine.”

 Jer 44:27

“Behold, I am watching over them for evil and not for good; all the men of Judah who are in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword and by famine, until there is an end of them.”

 Jer 52:6

“On the ninth day of the fourth month the famine was so severe in the city, that there was no food for the people of the land.”

 

Where is Isaiah?

The reader may have been surprised not to find Isaiah’s quotes ahead of Jeremiah’s, given their relative placement in the bible. But Isaiah, for a very long book, has only two famine verses and none for plague or pestilence. The translation being used in these posts is the RSV; it may be that other translations would choose different vocabulary.

Isa 14:30

And the first-born of the poor will feed, and the needy lie down in safety; but I will kill your root with famine, and your remnant I will slay.

 Isa 51:19

These two things have befallen you–who will condole with you?–devastation and destruction, famine and sword; who will comfort you?

 

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Warning! Is “One World Religion” on the move?

May 13th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Without much notice, the Fatima pilgrimage site is shut down today (May 13), on the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima!

Without much notice, tomorrow (May 14) is announced as a world wide day of prayer by The Higher Committee of Human Fraternity, established between Pope Francis and the IMAM at their meeting in Abu Dhabi. And the Pope is asking for Catholic involvement.

https://gulfnews.com/uae/uaes-higher-committee-of-human-fraternity-calls-for-religious-unity-in-response-to-covid-19-1.71451478

“Higher” — Higher than what? So high that the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church calls on her members to join in prayer with every other faith form, before God, putting aside differences as if they don’t matter? That is exactly the behavior to be expected from One World Religion, and it has just made its move. Why do we have to go to God as a committee with unbelievers? or mis-believers? Doesn’t He hear every heart, even when it is the only heart praying. We pray as One when we are One, and that does not include Oneness in wanting a virus to go away. It is about Oneness in Faith. But it is a good opportunity to get us used to obeying a call from the globalists, intruding on Catholics’ prayer life. No. No. No.

 

Let’s pray today

to Our Lady of Fatima

for all our needs,

including to stay free

from a “One World Religion”

 

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The danger of bad shepherds

May 12th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

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It took a Quarantine (to get me to do this!)

May 9th, 2020, Promulgated by Hopefull

After scrubbing down everything in sight, and in evaluating each item from the supermarket on how it can be disinfected (if we throw away the outside packaging, a lot can get by with a wipe down before and after storing) I then looked at one of the most difficult to disinfect items which arrives nearly every day: the mail! Especially the religious solicitations (and soon a political avalanche as well.) Time to start with the religious “stuff” which has been a problem I’ve avoided for a long time.

A lot of items won’t stand up to water or alcohol, and a lot I don’t even want to handle. But I finally decided to take on the solicitations, especially of a religious nature. I have friends who think that throwing a holy card (probably unblessed) into the garbage should be confessed. I don’t know if that is true or not, but I do know that I feel guilty for doing so. But what am I to do with all the “stuff” they send me? So far virtually no not-for-profit has seemed to honor my request not to receive mail or phone calls (which have accelerated since the tie-down.)

Well, I finally took on the imposing pile of “stuff.” I’ve sent the following letter to ever singled solicitor, and now, even if they don’t honor my request, responsibility for the discarded so-called holy cards and other paraphernalia are on that sender. They can take wasting donor funds to the confessional. But I no longer will feel any guilt at all. Here’s the letter I wrote and have been copying all day, mailing on my stamp, and never going to open again. Plus, my desire to disinfect now applies to much less volume. (I’m thinking UV light for that). Feel free to copy whatever fits your circumstances:

Letter to unsolicited ‘charitable’ solicitors:

 

Dear Not-for-Profit entity,

I have been on your mailing list for sometime now, and I may even have made a donation or two in the past. However, with the changes in the world and in my own life, needs and focus, I will no longer be donating to your organization or to a number of other not-for-profits I may have supported in the past. It is not that you have done anything wrong, nor can you change my decision, which is made for my own intentions.

This last mailing from me is a goodwill gesture to help you avoid needless mailing expense. I don’t want address labels, wrapping paper, ribbon, holy cards, notepads, rosaries, medals, scapulars, Christmas and other seasonal cards,  stickers, little candles to return for melting, mini prayer books, sticky nickels, scraps of fabric to sign and return, raffle tickets, calendars, imprinted ball point pens, linty gloves and socks, mini-manicure sets, or any of myriad other gimmicks I receive constantly. And I surely do not want donations made in my name to other not-for-profits which will merely add to the problem.  I simply want much less mail to receive, open and dispose of, which is clogging my recycling bin and, worse, using up my time and energy. If I am on your calling list, please move me to your “Do not call list.”

Please cancel all your mailings to me, __________ (insert name and variations)

and variations thereof, at this address:

123 xxxxxxxxxx

yyyyyyyy, ZZ     (Add other addresses like an office if applicable, and to avoid another stamp.)

 

Beginning NOW, I will no longer open any mail from your organization or from dozens of others to whom I am sending this letter. DO NOT write to me, because I will never see it; it’s going straight from mail box to garbage. And you would simply be wasting the funds you get from other donors. Thank you for your anticipated compliance and cooperation. This is not a first warning; it is a final warning. Please respect my decision and your responsibility.

Sincerely,

 

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Heresy among the Hierarchy? Part II: vs. Kings & Chronicles

May 8th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

In Part I, we only looked at some of the verses regarding plague(s), pestilence(s) and famine(s) from the 5 books of the Torah which were written by Moses, and showing that God indeed has sent such chastisements on His People. In Part II below we’ll look at some of those same word references in the books oriented to the history of Israel as recorded in Samuel, Kings and Chronicles. Reminder: What is the ‘hierarchical heresy’ we are refuting? It’s the opinion publicly proclaimed by some prelates that God does not and would not ever send plague or pestilence or famine on His People (Israelites or Christians.) Extra verses added 5/11/20.

1Sa 4:8

Woe to us! Who can deliver us from the power of these mighty gods? These are the gods who smote the Egyptians with every sort of plague in the wilderness.

2Sa 21:1

“Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years, year after year; and David sought the face of the LORD. And the LORD said, ‘There is bloodguilt on Saul and on his house, because he put the Gib’eonites to death.'”

2Sa 24:13-15

“So Gad came to David and told him, and said to him, ‘Shall three years of famine come to you in your land? Or will you flee three months before your foes while they pursue you? Or shall there be three days’ pestilence in your land? Now consider, and decide what answer I shall return to Him who sent me.’ Then David said to Gad,’I am in great distress; let us fall into the hand of  the Lord, for His mercy is great; but let me not fall into the hand of man.’ So the LORD sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning until the appointed time; and there died of the people from Dan to Beer-sheba seventy thousand men.”

 2Sa 24:21

And Arau’nah said, “Why has my lord the king come to his servant?” David said, “To buy the threshing floor of you, in order to build an altar to the LORD, that the plague may be averted from the people.”

 2Sa 24:25

And David built there an altar to the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So the LORD heeded supplications for the land, and the plague was averted from Israel.

 1Ki 8:37

“If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence or blight or mildew or locust or caterpillar; if their enemy besieges them in any of their cities; whatever plague, whatever sickness there is;

2Ki 4:38

“And Eli’sha came again to Gilgal when there was a famine in the land. And as the sons of the prophets were sitting before him, he said to his servant, “Set on the great pot, and boil pottage for the sons of the prophets.”

2Ki 6:25

“And there was a great famine in Sama’ria, as they besieged it, until an ass’s head was sold for eighty shekels of silver, and the fourth part of a kab of dove’s dung for five shekels of silver.”

2Ki 7:4

“If we say, ‘Let us enter the city,’ the famine is in the city, and we shall die there; and if we sit here, we die also. So now come, let us go over to the camp of the Syrians; if they spare our lives we shall live, and if they kill us we shall but die.”

2Ki 8:1

Now Eli’sha had said to the woman whose son he had restored to life, ‘Arise, and depart with your household, and sojourn wherever you can; for the LORD has called for a famine, and it will come upon the land for seven years.'”

2Ki 25:3

“On the ninth day of the fourth month the famine was so severe in the city that there was no food for the people of the land.”

1Ch 21:17

And David said to God, “Was it not I who gave command to number the people? It is I who have sinned and done very wickedly. But these sheep, what have they done? Let Thy hand, I pray thee, O LORD my God, be against me and against my father’s house; but let not the plague be upon Thy people.”

1Ch 21:22

And David said to Ornan, “Give me the site of the threshing floor that I may build on it an altar to the LORD–give it to me at its full price–that the plague may be averted from the people.”

 2Ch 6:28

“If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence or blight or mildew or locust or caterpillar; if their enemies besiege them in any of their cities; whatever plague, whatever sickness there is;

“When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command the locust to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people, if My people who are called by My Name humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
“If evil comes upon us, the sword, judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house, and before Thee, for Thy Name is in this house, and cry to Thee in our affliction, and Thou wilt hear and save.”

2Ch 21:14

“… behold, the LORD will bring a great plague on your people, your children, your wives, and all your possessions,….”

2Ch 32:11

“Is not Hezeki’ah misleading you, that he may give you over to die by famine and by thirst, when he tells you, ‘The LORD our God will deliver us from the hand of the king of Assyria’?

 

What else do we learn from Kings and Chronicles (1 and 2 Samuel are called  1 and 2 Kings in the Septuagint)? When God gave Samuel permission to yield to the people’s demand for an earthly ruler like the other countries, He did not surrender the power He always held to warn and to discipline through the sword (wars, which continue even today), plague/pestilence, and famine. Nor has God ever conveyed to mankind the power to change climate and weather, over which He has sole control. Some are amused today that when people lived closer to the land, it was common to offer Mass and prayer for good growing seasons, and nurturing weather. It is easy to forget that those needs are just as important today as they ever were. We are just less aware.

Then, suddenly, flash floods and wildfires out of control remind us of our own lack of power. If there is something deserving of amusement, it is the belief from the so-called intelligentsia among the globalists that by using up the resources of the world, and killing billions of people alive today to reduce total population, that somehow the world would be saved. Let us say to them: “The world has already been saved — by Jesus Christ.  We have no need of a tutorial in how to live together AND care for the environment by some wooden idol. We have no need of being instructed by those who would miss even the first couple questions in a first-grader’s catechism: “Who made me?” “Why did God make me?” and “Who is God?” People who don’t truly know the answers to such questions have no right to lead others.

We also see in God’s promises that it is possible to stay His Hand against the people if they convert and repent of their sins. Can we even imagine what the world would be like if everyone prayed for an end to abortion? There is much argument about whether or not the current pandemic is punishment by God for our sins. I would say ‘no,’ because what we are going through in no way approximates the justice required for punishment of the very great evils perpetrated. But it seems more likely that this is a caution to us to stop what we are doing, and get back to the catechism, to worshiping God and to true repentance.

So Part II above supports the point made earlier that God does use plagues, pestilence and famine, in the long run, to save His flock.

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Non-essential Services — Catholic Family Center

May 5th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

It has taken several days to get past the anger regarding Catholic Family Center’s recent “services” debacle, ensnaring the most vulnerable, and ignoring truth and reality on multiple subjects.

So what do 500+ employees of Catholic Family Center actually do? In CFC’s articulation of its own mission, its website states:

“Our Mission: Catholic Family Center partners  with people – especially the vulnerable and those facing poverty – to help them achieve their full human potential. A division of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Rochester, CFC offers compassionate and comprehensive services to families and individuals in need across all stages of life.”

 

So, let’s consider first what makes for “full human potential.” It can be nothing less than achievement of eternal life and the joy of the Beatific Vision. It is not about comfort, money, health, knowledge, environment or myriad other desires; it is simply about ‘whatever it takes’ to receive the gift of eternal life. It is really quite a simple and beautiful goal. But that is why it is so confusing, so illogical, and so dangerous that alleged parts of the church, although inconsistent with Church Teaching, seem to reject the good, and embrace what is evil or, at the least, what is meaningless and lacks spiritual value. In that tone, we note the preoccupation of Catholic Family Center, among others, about idolatry of “mother earth” or, as it was called during the Amazonia Synod: “pachamama.” CFC’s preoccupation with such idolatry is indeed a “non-essential” service. Send those employees home, or at least recognize that donations to CFC can only proportionally be deductible, eliminating what is political, for example. Worse than any impropriety under claiming 401(c)3 exempt status not deserved is the effect on souls, their relying on CFC’s credibility as “Catholic” in unrelated matters.

In CFC’s April and May issues, in the “Salt and Light” attachments, there is celebratory language about the 50th anniversary of Earth Day (if things are so bad, what is there to celebrate after 50 years of trying?) and the 5th anniversary of Pope Francis’ encyclical “Laudato Si,” which was the subject of the book “Half a Dialogue” which I wrote in reply to Pope Francis’  invitation to comment on his encyclical.  The rough draft  is still partly on CF.

First, let’s be specific about how the Catholic Family Center has gone astray, potentially risking souls as well.

 

Paradise on Earth? Nope. Christ never promised us such a thing.

It’s hard enough keeping our souls weeded through frequent confession!

Worse, redirecting our time, energy and resources to creating paradise on earth is a waste of effort. For we know from all three synoptic gospels, that :

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.”

That truth certainly does not endorse treating the earth without responsibility, but one can’t build a religion around environmentalism. Why is it even implied? It is because there is a myth, a distortion, an error that claims if we all could just be one religion, worshiping the environment, all would be beautiful and perfect. It is directly a rejection of Christ Himself, and all that He taught.  Notice: He did not add an extra Corporal Work of Mercy re the environment to Matthew 25!

The Catholic Family Center plays to the myth of Climate Change.  It is one of the biggest hoaxes foisted on the world. It is actually a socialist strategy for redistribution of wealth. One example from a conference in Brazil chaired by Bp. Bergoglio is to tax other countries for the oxygen they consume, produced by the Amazon. Even if one didn’t believe the foregoing viewpoint, it is nevertheless completely inappropriate to use a tax exempt organization’s written communications to take sides and lend any credibility to such a contentious viewpoint.

If one is unsure of the claim of climate change, just consider if there is anything at all in the Gospels, or even in the entire New Testament, which claims that Jesus repaired an environmental blight. Did He ever condemn someone’s actions against the environment? Revelation does warn of environmental effects which will come in the endtimes, but from the Hand of God, not from climate change. Does Christ ever mention watching for such a sign of the endtimes? One unrealistic claim in what CFC states is the idea that humans can change climate. No we can’t. In all the stewardship conferred by God to Mankind, climate and weather are not mentioned. So, if we can’t fix it, how can we cause it?

One strange connection being drawn without logic seems to be linking the pandemic to some kind of failure in environmental stewardship. It is almost as if the writers are delighted to find something else to bolster their claim to a crusade for managing the weather! Such a link is claimed without any proof, even by Pope Francis who describes it as ‘mother’ earth having an emotional tantrum due to human alleged neglect.

But God is the author of most plagues and pestilences, so why not say so? Aah! because that would acknowledge God, in Whose Hands all things rest. And which no human effort will wrest from His Hands. It is quite odd to find in the CFC’s writings arguments regarding restarting the economy slowly so as not to disturb factors over which we have no control or knowledge anyway; i.e. as if they really knew what “jump start the auto industry” actually means. These ignorant masses just slavishly bow to the few who know but won’t disclose the true meaning. The definitions seem to take on a life of their own.

The Catholic Family Center, by embracing the language of idolatry, makes itself party to that cause. A “Pachamama Alliance”? That despicable hunk of wood which besmirched the Vatican Gardens, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Carmelite Church? and even the Pope Himself? The evil one must be rejoicing.

A Catholic Climate “Covenant” — another holy word of agreement with God becomes agreement among the people He created, now despoiled by joining those who oppose God. It is reminiscent of the determination of the people who built the Tower of Babel! Both of these are about choosing up sides, and we are indeed invited to choose. God is “pro-choice” in the sense that He makes us choose. What will it be? Goat or Sheep? Weeds or wheat? We can never say we were forced to accept Pachamama.

Finally, although relatively incomplete, I will add CFC’s being a shill for the Democratic Party, or the ‘left’ if one prefers, as the party itself seems to be falling apart. CFC has apparently run a list of “10 things to do in the next 10 years to save the earth.” Let’s just look at the last one which says more than it is meant to say.

Note the glaring gall to presume we can save the earth. Christ saved souls. God created the world. Do we dare assume with such magnificence and munificence that He is incapable of saving His own creation? That He didn’t give us the means to endure until He returns? And, if we don’t have the means, then He must be coming. Soon. “Come, Lord Jesus.” Let’s not hold it up!  But certain parts of the Church and of humanity are so incensed at the idea of bowing to what God has done, and to Whom God is, that they dare to think they are needed to sustain His work. What arrogance. Ten years? That even assumes we have 10 years remaining. We may be surprised. And is cleaning up plastic how you’d like to spend your last 10 years on earth?

So, then there is the usual left-hood rallying call to lobby for the absurd “Green New Deal” which would surely bankrupt America, and that is more the purpose than anything green (unless its green American dollars in the pocket!) And what is that tiny print, unreadable to many, which purports not to be urging voting for any particular party or candidate. Hogwash. It is very clearly begging for votes for the left. “New Deal” is coined from the historic program under FDR. No minuscule lettering can change that intent. Elsewhere in its materials CFC notes the role it plays in managing CRS and CCHD funds, which inadequacies and conflicts of interest are mentioned elsewhere on Cleansing Fire.

Where the Catholic Family Center fails overwhelmingly on behalf of families is in not standing up and praising the most pro-life president we have ever had, who keeps his promises, and has steered more funds toward the kind of work CFC should be doing, including in encouraging their clients and would-be-clients to hold all representatives accountable who murder in the womb, and at  birth, the tiniest and most vulnerable human beings — just like Andrew Cuomo sponsored and celebrated. He, and the CFC, shouldn’t have the right to call themselves “Catholic.” 

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Heresy among the Hierarchy? Part I: vs. Torah

May 3rd, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Without naming names (as least for the moment), it is past the time now to respond to those prelates of the Catholic Church who unabashedly and without apology apparently misrepresent the mind and will of God. Blithely, one after another church leader states some variant of “Don’t worry. God doesn’t kill with plagues or pestilence. This Wuhan-virus didn’t come from Him. He wouldn’t do that to His creation.” Balderdash! God not only would do so, but has already done so in numerous circumstances. Our defensive prelates are either protecting their own lack of knowledge of the Old Testament or thinking wishfully; i.e. “Not on my watch He wouldn’t.” So, is it realistic to have an expectation that a loving God wouldn’t use plagues, pestilence or famine to discipline His creation? The simplest explanation is that God loves us too much NOT to do whatever is necessary to save our souls, without infringing our free will. Saving our bodies seems of lesser concern to Him Who is eternal, the One Who wants to give us that same gift.

There are over 7,000 words in the bible associated with plague, pestilence and/or famine. And many of those outcomes are from the Hand of God, but not all. For example, the famine in Egypt during the time of Joseph would seem to allow for various interpretations of cause. Others, like the 10 plagues associated with the Chosen People’s leaving Egypt, are clearly at the Hand of God.

There are too many references to include all in one post; however, only to do a smattering of references makes it too easy to dismiss God’s priority and practice of using various methods to remind us of our responsibilities. So the next few posts will include the references which seem most to be at the Hands of God, the most relevant biblical quotes in which Almighty God is identified as causing plague, pestilence and/or famine, beginning in Genesis through to the promises and threats of Revelation. Not all are against Israel; but those against His People are quite startling, some of similar impact as the Wuhan-virus. But while His People today continue in denial, what is the chance of mitigating these chastisements? In this post we look only at the references from the Torah (Pentateuch), that is the first 5 books of the Old Testament: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. Hopefully, some reading of just the references will whet the appetite to explore the context further.

Gen 12:17

“But the LORD afflicted Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sar’ai, Abram’s wife.”

Exo 5:3

“Then they said, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us; let us go, we pray, a three days’ journey into the wilderness, and sacrifice to the LORD our God, lest He fall upon us with pestilence or with the sword.”

Exo 8:2

“But if you refuse to let them go, behold, I will plague all your country with frogs;….”

Exo 9:3

“… behold, the hand of the LORD will fall with a very severe plague upon your cattle which are in the field, the horses, the asses, the camels, the herds, and the flocks.”

 Exo 9:15

“For by now I could have put forth my hand and struck you and your people with pestilence, and you would have been cut off from the earth;…”

Exo 11:1

“The LORD said to Moses, ‘Yet one plague more I will bring upon Pharaoh and upon Egypt; afterwards he will let you go hence; when he lets you go, he will drive you away completely.'”

 Exo 12:13

“The blood shall be a sign for you, upon the houses where you are; and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and no plague shall fall upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.”

 Exo 30:12

“When you take the census of the people of Israel, then each shall give a ransom for himself to the LORD when you number them, that there be no plague among them when you number them.”

 Exo 32:35

“And the LORD sent a plague upon the people, because they made the calf which Aaron made.”

Lev 26:21

“Then if you walk contrary to me, and will not hearken to me, I will bring more plagues upon you, sevenfold as many as your sins.”

Lev 26:25

“And I will bring a sword upon you, that shall execute vengeance for the covenant; and if you gather within your cities I will send pestilence among you, and you shall be delivered into the hand of the enemy.”

Num 8:19

“And I have given the Levites as a gift to Aaron and his sons from among the people of Israel, to do the service for the people of Israel at the tent of meeting, and to make atonement for the people of Israel, that there may be no plague among the people of Israel in case the people of Israel should come near the sanctuary.”

Num 11:33

“While the meat was yet between their teeth, before it was consumed, the anger of the LORD was kindled against the people, and the LORD smote the people with a very great plague.”

Num 14:12

“I will strike them with the pestilence and disinherit them, and I will make of you a nation greater and mightier than they.”

 Num 14:37

“… the men who brought up an evil report of the land, died by plague before the LORD.”

 Num 16:46-50

“And Moses said to Aaron, ‘Take your censer, and put fire therein from off the altar, and lay incense on it, and carry it quickly to the congregation, and make atonement for them; for wrath has gone forth from the LORD, the plague has begun.’ So Aaron took it as Moses said, and ran into the midst of the assembly; and behold, the plague had already begun among the people; and he put on the incense, and made atonement for the people. And he stood between the dead and the living; and the plague was stopped.” Now those who died by the plague were fourteen thousand seven hundred, besides those who died in the affair of Korah. And Aaron returned to Moses at the entrance of the tent of meeting, when the plague was stopped.”

 Num 25:9

“Nevertheless those that died by the plague were twenty-four thousand.”

 Num 31:16

“Behold, these caused the people of Israel, by the counsel of Balaam, to act treacherously against the LORD in the matter of  Pe’or,  and so the plague came among the congregation of the LORD.”

 Deu 28:21

“The LORD will make the pestilence cleave to you until He has consumed you off the land which you are entering to take  possession of it.”

 Deu 32:24

“…they shall be wasted with hunger, and devoured with burning heat and poisonous pestilence; and I will send the teeth of  beasts against them, with venom of crawling things of the dust.”

 

In these Torah references we can see some of what the people did to anger God and to provoke his righteous punishment. Yet, when people are in denial about any cause for chastisement, as we see in the current times, they are naturally in denial that it is a chastisement which is being experienced.

Thus, in this opening post, we might consider what has angered God previously, what He has commanded us to do or not do, and to examine whether such offenses are being committed.  The above verses, and those to come in the next few posts, may well be a result of any one of three activities highly displeasing to Almighty God, and the guilt that rests upon His people and their shepherds being deserving of plague punishment:

Idolatry  – Pachamama idols in Vatican Churches, and embrace of climate change as a one world religion strategy

Abortion – Failure to have defended the most vulnerable; worldwide acceptance of abortion and population reduction

Corruption of the Shepherds – violation of celibacy promises, financial greed, betrayal of Chinese Underground Church.

The skeletal list is seriously incomplete, but may at least allay any belief that Church leadership has done ‘nothing’ to deserve such a plague. Most recently, in considering that God has quarantined His people from the sacraments, to great sadness and loss, one must at least raise the question if it isn’t actually the hierarchy being quarantined for the protection of the laity. More to come.

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Father Z to the Bishops

April 29th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Action Item from Father Z to the bishops:

 

A prayer for a miracle: the sudden, complete and lasting obliteration of COVID-19.

Almighty and eternal God, who shaped us from the mud of the earth and breathed into us beautiful life and eternal souls made to give You glory, look graciously now upon Your poor creatures who have fallen into sin.  We now cry out for mercy, though we have deserved Your wrath and the rod of Your correction and trials.  Be appeased.  Lift from us this present affliction of disease and its fear as once You withdrew Your destroying Angel from scourging Jerusalem after smiting Israel with the sword of plague.  Look kindly on us, kneeling as if upon the threshing floor.  Look into our ashen and sackcloth laden hearts which we desire never again to be hardened against the promptings of Your Spirit, and forgive.  Forgive the offences so many of Your ungrateful images have committed against the Hearts of our Lord and His Mother.   Forgive the countless sacrilegious Communions of the last decades.  Forgive Your priests and bishops who in great numbers have abandoned their proper place between Your people and Your altars.  Some have committed unspeakable offences, not excluding even manifest idolatry.  Forgive all of us every neglect and unworthy deed and thought as well as any lingering attachment to sins.  Forgive all the sins that have cried to heaven.  Forgive and then give us graces for our fuller sorrow out of love for You, more than our dread of punishment, and also for our firm purpose of amendment.  Bold with confidence that the prayers of the converted sinner are precious to You, we now dare to ask You for a miracle.  By Your might, annihilate the COVID-19 virus and all its mutations and variations.  Restrain this disease, this consequence of sin, and make it to be harmless.  We ask that You do this, almighty and merciful God, suddenly, completely, and in a lasting way so that the peoples of the whole world will recognize Your almighty hand and fall upon their faces in wonder, faith and gratitude.  By this miracle, reveal Your love and kindness even though we do not merit the least of Your favors.  Even while we submit ourselves to Your will, we ask this, Eternal Father, through Our Lord Jesus Christ Your Son, who died for us on Calvary and rose again in glorious impassibility.  We ask this through the Holy Spirit the Consoler.   We implore this through the intercession of Saint Raphael, Your healing Archangel, as well as through ____.   In particular we, now humbled, entrust this audacious petition to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Health of the Sick.  Let her intercede for us as the Queen of Heaven whom Your Son will not refuse. “Not to us, O Lord, not to us; but to Thy name give glory.”  O God, loving and kind, we beg You to grant us this miracle.  Amen.

___

New Yorkers especially might ask for this miracle through the intercession of Venerable Fulton J. Sheen, who spent so much time there and who died in Manhattan and was interred in St. Patrick’s before his translation to Peoria.

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Renewal of Consecration of the U.S. to the Blessed Virgin Mary

April 29th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Renewal of Consecration of the United States to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Friday, May 1, at 3 PM by Bishop Salvatore Matano

in union with the Bishops of the U.S.

Visit www.DoR.org to view half hour consecration service.

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Abp. Vigano: The Faithful and Priests feel abandoned!

April 29th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Church Militant:  Interview with Abp. Vigano from Marco Tosatti’s blog:

https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/abp-vigano-the-faithful-and-priests-are-right-to-feel-abandoned

EXCERPTS from Archbishop Viganò :

“The concordat between the Holy See and the Italian State recognizes that the Church has, as its ‘native right,’ full freedom and autonomy in carrying out her ministry, which is given proper social and public expression in the celebration of Holy Mass and the administration of the sacraments. No authority may interfere in this ministry, not even with the consent of Church authority, which is not the master of the sacraments but rather the administrator of the grace conveyed by them.

Jurisdiction over places of worship belongs in toto and exclusively to the ordinary of the place, who decides with full autonomy, for the good of the souls entrusted to him as pastor, which functions may be celebrated there and by whom they may be celebrated. It is not the prime minister’s role to determine who may have access to churches, nor to legislate about what the faithful or the minister of worship can or cannot do.

Beyond this, various authoritative pronouncements have been made by eminent jurists and judges — including those of the Supreme Court — objecting to the legitimacy of legislating by means of presidential decrees that violate the superior laws and prevailing guarantees of the constitution of the Italian Republic. Even if we were not talking about the Catholic religion, which is particularly protected by its special status, the suspension of the right to freedom of worship that is implied by the prime minister’s decree is clearly illegitimate. I trust that someone will officially declare it so, putting an end to this indecorous delirium of omnipotence by the civil authority not only towards God and His Church but also towards the Catholic faithful and Italian citizens.

It should be clarified, in order to avoid misunderstandings, that the bishops’ conference does not have any authority over the bishops, who each have full jurisdiction in their own diocese, in union with the Apostolic See. And this is even more important once we have understood that the CEI has been all too amenable to — or rather, dominated by — the Italian government. It is unheard of the Italian bishops’ conference would continue to tolerate such abuse.

Bishops should not wait for an entity without any jurisdiction to tell them what to do: It is up to each of them to decide how to act, with prudence and wisdom, in order to guarantee the sacraments and the celebration of the Mass to the faithful. And each one can do so without having to ask either the bishops’ conference or the state, whose authority ends at the entrance of our churches and must stop there.

It is unheard of the Italian bishops’ conference would continue to tolerate such abuse, which prejudices the divine right of the Church, violates a law of the state, and creates a very serious precedent….

The supine silence of the CEI, and of almost all of the individual ordinaries, reveals that this is a situation of subordination to the state that has no precedent, and that has rightly been perceived by the faithful and by priests as a situation in which they have been abandoned to themselves.

The most emblematic examples have been the scandalous interruptions of the celebration of Mass by law enforcement, with a sacrilegious arrogance that should have received an immediate and very strong protest from the secretariat of state. The ambassador of Italy should have been summoned to the Holy See and presented with a harsh note of protest against the government’s serious violation of the concordat, and the Holy See should have informed the Italian government that it would exercise its right to withdraw the apostolic nuncio to Italy if the government’s illegitimate provision was not withdrawn.

Cardinal [Pietro] Parolin, in his role of sponsor of Prime Minister Conte, finds himself in an embarrassing situation and a conflict of interest. It appears evident that, instead of protecting the sovereignty and freedom of the Church in fidelity to his high institutional function as secretary of state, Cdl. Parolin has shamefully chosen to line up alongside his lawyer friend [Conte]. Not even the economic interests of the so-called Catholic voluntary service could justify his making such a choice.”

Extensive Interview continues here:       

https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/abp-vigano-the-faithful-and-priests-are-right-to-feel-abandoned  including the Pope’s support of the Conte government over the Church.

See also:  https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/pope-snubs-bishops-bid-open-churches

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So that Parishes may not Perish!

April 27th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

From CatholicVote.org

CARES Act includes Catholic Nonprofits

While a diocese in bankruptcy probably won’t qualify for such reimbursements, local parishes not named in those lawsuits are in a different situation. Click on “Continue reading” in the above excerpt for a more hopeful view.

We’ve carried this on the Ticker since it first appeared in early April. How many  parishes are taking advantage of this opportunity?

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For Inspiration in Time of Tribulation

April 26th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

First Communion in India

(Thank you to The Narrow Gate for bringing this picture to our attention.)

 

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On Behalf of the Half-crazed, Hateful, Beloved Children of God

April 25th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Yes, they willfully break the direct commandments of a God who already could have thrown them into hell. They don’t know about the wave of mercy they are riding.

Yes, they deliberately and obsessively violate the norms and expectations of a society which they imagine is their enemy, in which each seems unable to communicate with the other, but which is the very weapon those in rebellion seek to capture for their own use. They hate what they want, and want what they hate.

Yes, with their actions and words they specifically seek to outrage and alienate even those who would build bridges in charity and kindness to the most alienated.

The three ‘yes’ behaviors mentioned above are very similar to three ‘no’ behaviors in spoiled, angry, misbehaving young children. They appear to be adults on a physical level, but the tantrum of a 3 year old is not much different from what is playing out on an international stage – in shouted rage when they can’t have the toys they want because they belong to others, a refusal to interact effectively with others for a common good, and preoccupation with their own body parts in an ultimately unhealthy way.

The purpose of this musing is not to condemn or to further alienate, but to point out some things to those who don’t understand ‘why’ we have 3-year old ‘adults,’ and therefore have no sympathy or support for what that generation has gone through, and continues to go through. The world may see them as spoiled brats, but they see themselves as victims, and not without good reason. But as they flail about looking to place blame on what seems to divide us (race, gender, age, wealth, e.g.) the most obvious issues are being ignored. Some are from those of the victim’s own household. Here are a few examples:

 

The womb-tomb

Never before in the history of the world have so many children been born from wombs which, quite frankly, are murder scenes. Can we actually think that the legally approved trauma to the prior resident of the womb will not affect the mental health, psyche, spiritual need and–yes– the very soul of the next occupant of that womb? Oh, but they don’t think of themselves as having souls? Of course not, it is part of the denial of the trauma.

Young adults who suspect they are victims of such trauma ought to have the legal right to subpoena their birth mother’s medical records to confirm or deny the suspicion of trauma, and then be able to take steps toward healing. Why should any young adult, starting out in their own adulthood, be shackled by the biological and mental burden of such suspicion? Do they have a right to know? Yes, it would seem so; in that way those who provide help may learn to recognize and treat the symptoms from the residual impact of such violence.

But there is also the issue of impact on the adult mother-child relationship. Those who grew up never wondering if a brother or sister had been aborted, may never understand how an empty seat at the dining room table may appear to one who suspects the reason. There is a great peace in never having had the thought occur “Did my mother have one of my siblings killed?” There may even be survivor guilt which can impact family relations, school work and friendships. It may also underlay drug use, drowning out the anxieties associated with being born from the womb in which one or more abortions took place.

Another nagging question may be whether or not the father knew of the abortion. Did he fail his role as family protector? Will that affect his sons’ willingness to protect their own families in the future? Or lead to confusion about a son’s role as a man? Or affect the kind of man with whom his daughter chooses to spend her life?

There are also allegations that some genetic material from prior pregnancies remains in a woman’s body. It raises the speculation that perhaps such tissue may migrate to future births, and even cause gender confusion, but it is still a speculation. Very little research is being done to challenge future impact, and it is quite politically incorrect to point out that it needs to be done. Those future victims of prior abortion, in the very womb from which they’ve been born, deserve to know if they are affected and how they might be helped. Is it related, for example, to unexplained feelings of intense anger? Is it a defense in a serious crime? Is it the basis of fear that those who should be most trusted (God, the Law, the family) are the least trusted or acknowledged by those suffering intra-family trauma.

It is a fair question to ask: “What proof is there of trauma to the next child born in a womb in which a baby has been murdered?” Due to the political pressure not to look at such subjects, a better question might be: “What proof is there that future children from the same womb are not affected?” There seems to be no such proof, or even willingness to consider the question.

 

Contraception and the Feminization of Men

Another subject rarely considered is the effect on male children of their mothers’ contraceptive use. What residuals continue in the mother’s body as she tries to have a healthy pregnancy? I have been told by a few people closely associated with municipal drinking water systems that there is no way to remove contraceptive residues (metabolites) from domestic drinking water, so why bother testing for it? Coming from an area of the country where water is often drawn from lakes, the question does not lack meaning. Why is the current issue of gender confusion, especially among men, NOT related to hormonal pollution? One hears from time to time of aberrant fish, frogs and other creatures in fresh water lakes from which drinking water is drawn. Why? And how could humans not experience aberrations in their own bodies? While female hormones in a mother’s body may have greater impact on male children, environmental factors deserve consideration as well.

That is not to say that female offspring don’t have their own impacts from excessive hormonal waste in the environment, or from retention in mothers’ bodies from contraceptive use. Breast cancer is one potential outcome for female offspring, as DES contamination was in the 1970’s. The FDA stopped the prescription of DES (a synthetic estrogen) to pregnant women in 1971, and as livestock feed in 1979. The use of DES had begun in 1940 to prevent premature births. A rare form of breast cancer and certain forms of cervical cancer resulted from DES use, manifested in daughters and granddaughters of the women who used the drug. Later evidence points to DES having a negative health effect from such usage, including among children of male offspring, leaving many unanswered questions, and precluding lack of data for rightful lawsuits.

Is it any wonder that both female and male offspring might have undiagnosed impacts from DES and a variety of other contraceptives, especially those administered at high dose levels when they first came to market, like estrogen and progesterone? DES has been called one of the worst medical blunders in recorded history, and that multiple future generations will experience the effects. Yet many parents and grandparents have not even shared with generations of their descendants that there is such a risk, let alone have the insight to know what problems to look for now, or how to treat.

When the unmitigated rage of young people flashes across the screen from time to time, it is hard not to think of hormonal contamination. The Greeks had a word for estrogen. It means “producer of frenzy.” Pre-menstrual tensions are not a myth in women, but what might be the effect of those trace female hormones in men? It is not difficult to have some sympathy for those who express rage without knowing who the target should be. Several generations now are most likely contaminated; but studying the problem is unlikely to be funded as it is not ‘politically correct’ to even seek the cause of gender confusion.

 

Rage on the loose

If the two or three generations most affected by hormones or their residues often don’t know of their risk, if the trauma of  birth from a womb which hosted abortion is undiagnosed, and usually without meaningful therapy or even inter-generational communication, what else has been hidden that an individual should have a right to know? There is one over-arching item which cannot be left unsaid, as it may well be at the core of the rage of young adults today, and the cornerstone to achieving peace. And it is also related to their parents’ own difficulties in being able to meaningfully have cared for and properly influenced their children, grown or not.

The guilt lies at the feet of those parents who knew what they were doing, and did it anyway, and have not repented, even interiorly as they close their eyes at night.  The abortion mindset, of a parent willing to deliver their baby (or babies) to be butchered, for the sake of more affluence, comfort, political liberation, or women’s “rights”, thoroughly contaminates the holistic respect which should grace the parent-child relationship. At some level, one must ask how a parent can look at one of their grown children, or their tiny grandchild, and not wonder about the one whose life was ended by a pair of scissors at the base of the skull.

To leave so much unspoken between parent and child bases the whole relationship on dishonesty. Yet that absence itself is not the cause of the rage, or the anger which contorts faces. Rather, the rage is caused because it is difficult to have room in that parental relationship or in any relationship for even acknowledging that there is a God. So God, needed even more than parents, disappears from their lives.  That there are forces of evil intentionally destroying souls also is ignored. And that there actually are souls. The children and grandchildren of those who hide so much have been left not only with a parenting void, but without the only source which can help to overcome their rage.

There is simply no substitute for the love, nurturing and care one never received from a parent; but that is minor if one doesn’t know that there really is a God, who can (and wants to) provide everything that is missing. It is one thing to abort a child’s very being. But even worse, if it can possibly be imagined, to abort the soul as well, to deny it God’s own life. Immediately on writing those words, one can sense the derision and rage from those who have been grossly short-changed. Even the willingness to consider new possibilities has been stolen from those so enraged that they can’t find their way out of the noose which holds them. Their contorted faces look as if they were already in hell. At some level, hard to explain, they know they are missing something inestimable. They don’t know what it is or how to get it back. They grew up with everything, yet with nothing. And they have a right to be angry. Very, very angry. But for some there is still time, with  the possibility of creating and being created anew, for being beloved rather than neglected, and not held hostage by the sins of the parents.

 

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USCCB Vocations Study 2020

April 24th, 2020, Promulgated by Diane Harris

The full CARA report 4/24/20 profiles the Ordination Class of 2020 and can be found at:

http://cms.usccb.org/beliefs-and-teachings/vocations/ordination-class/index.cfm

 

In the summary article carried by Zenit, we read that:

  • Between 35% and 44% of all respondents attended a Catholic school for at least some part of their schooling.
  • Seven in ten respondents (72%) participated in Eucharistic Adoration on a regular basis before entering the seminary, a similar proportion (70%) prayed the rosary, more than two in five (44%) attended prayer group/Bible study, and two in five (38%) participated in high school retreats.
  • Seven in ten respondents (73%) served as altar servers before entering the seminary. Half (50%) served as lectors. Four in ten (40%) served as extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion.
  • Nine in ten respondents (89%) were encouraged to consider the priesthood by someone in their life, most frequently a parish priest, friend, or another parishioner.
  • Nine in ten respondents (89%) were encouraged to consider the priesthood by someone in their life, most frequently a parish priest, friend, or another parishioner.

 

 

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