On John McNichol’s ‘Open Letter to All’ Catholic Bloggers

SS Peter and Paul
SS Peter and Paul

John McNichol has written an article at Catholic Stand correcting people who correct people.

More often today, Catholics are finding themselves the target of verbal abuse, ‘unfriending’ and banning from blogging boards for disagreeing with Catholic bloggers on peripheral issues like water-boarding, lying to save unborn children, or giving a $15 per hour minimum wage.

I’m sorry but I don’t really get that. Maybe I’m stupid because I don’t get it. Perhaps if he were to name names I would actually know what he is talking about.

Like so.

But when Cephas came to Antioch I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned. For before certain men came from James, he ate with the Gentiles; but when they came he drew back and separated himself, fearing the circumcision party. And with him the rest of the Jews acted insincerely, so that even Barnabas was carried away by their insincerity. But when I saw that they were not straightforward about the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas before them all, “If you, though a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you compel the Gentiles to live like Jews?”

That is all.

34,000 Black Churches Break Fellowship with Presbyterian Church (USA) over Same-Sex ‘Marriage’

national_black_church_initiativeWASHINGTON, March 27, 2015 /Christian Newswire/ — The National Black Church Initiative (NBCI), a faith-based coalition of 34,000 churches comprised of 15 denominations and 15.7 million African Americans has broken its fellowship with Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA) following its recent vote to approve same-sex marriage.

The Presbyterian General Assembly, the top legislative body of the PCUSA, voted last June to revise the constitutional language defining marriage. This arbitrary change of Holy Scripture is a flagrantly pretentious and illegitimate maneuver by a body that has no authority whatsoever to alter holy text.

Rev. Anthony Evans, NBCI President noted “NBCI and its membership base are simply standing on the Word of God within the mind of Christ. We urge our brother and sisters of the PCUSA to repent and be restored to fellowship.”

PCUSA’s manipulation represents a universal sin against the entire church and its members. With this action, PCUSA can no longer base its teachings on 2,000 years of Christian scripture and tradition, and call itself a Christian entity in the body of Christ. It has forsaken its right by this single wrong act.

Apostle Paul warns us about this when he declared in Galatians 1:8 that there are those who will preach another Gospel.

For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him…For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

No church has the right to change the Word of God. By voting to redefine marriage PCUSA automatically forfeits Christ’s saving grace. There is always redemption in the body of Christ through confession of faith and adhering to Holy Scripture. In this case, PCUSA deliberately voted to change the Word of God and the interpretation of holy marriage between one man and one woman. This is why we must break fellowship with them and urge the entire Christendom to do so as well.

How will Notre Dame respond to Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act?

Rev. Edward Sorin, Founder of Notre Dame. Photo by Eccekevin
Rev. Edward Sorin, Founder of Notre Dame. Photo by Eccekevin

Now that Governor Mike Pence has signed Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law, how will Notre Dame respond?

Cardinal Newman Society asks:

The law could serve as legal protection for the University of Notre Dame if it chooses to reverse its policy of providing employee benefits to same-sex spouses—a policy that is not required by Indiana law and which was publicly opposed by Fort Wayne-South Bend Bishop Kevin Rhoades last October.

“Indiana’s leaders have done their part, now Notre Dame needs to step up and demonstrate its fidelity to Catholic teaching,” said Patrick Reilly, president of The Cardinal Newman Society. “To do otherwise rejects the precious religious freedom that Catholic institutions should be cherishing and defending.”

It will be interesting to see how this pans out.

Gaystapo led by General George Takei boycotts Indiana over religious freedom protection

gaystapo

The “Gaystapo” is the movement of activists among the radical left who band together to attack Christians who refuse to co-operate in their pro-homosexual agenda. The movement has various “generals” including Dan Savage and actor George Takei. Reacting to the news that Indiana Governor Mike Pence signed into law a religious freedom bill, Takei called on the gaystapo to “boycott Indiana.” The hashtag #BoycottIndiana is now trending on Twitter.

I’d like to offer as a rebuttal to the gaystapo the speeches of former President Bill Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore, both Democrats, from the signing of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993, which mirrors the bill signed by Governor Pence.

 

Why the florist Barronnelle Stutzman cannot provide flowers for a same-sex wedding

marriage_florist

From KOMO News on Facebook:

Barronnelle Stutzman has 60 days to pay the fine. The judge
ruled in February that her refusal of service violated Washington’s anti-discrimination and consumer protection laws.

The fine of $1001 is for her refusal, as a florist, to provide flowers for a same-sex wedding. The judge also ruled that she must provide those services.  It remains to be seen whether Stutzman will comply, take the matter to a higher court, or go out of business.  My guess is that she will take it to a higher court provided that she can afford to do so.

Many people are confused about why Christians object to providing services to same-sex couples in certain situations. Had the plaintiff in this case asked for flowers for a birthday party, a funeral, or virtually any other event, Stutzman could have provided them and it would not have been a sin, so the issue is not about whether she can serve homosexuals. It is whether she should actively cooperate in a ceremony that she objects to. The ruling forces her participation in a ceremony that she objects to on religious grounds.

Stutzman’s choice is between offending same-sex couples and offending God. The choice is to provide the flowers (which would prevent same-sex couples from being offended), or not to provide the flowers (which would avoid offending God.)

Same-sex “marriage” is not about “tolerance” for homosexuals.  It is a vehicle that is being used to force people to choose between God and the government.

Andreas Lubitz was a terrorist, though his rationale is unknown

andreas_lubitz

There is much speculation that Andreas Lubitz converted to Islam and, as such a convert, was an Islamist terrorist. There is, as yet, no real proof, and perhaps not even real evidence, that Lubitz converted to Islam.  One thing is certain, though. Regardless of his rationale, he was a terrorist.

Sky News reporter Mike Spudgun tweets:

I’m Sorry I don’t CARE what religion Andreas Lubitz was. Anyone who slaughters 150 people is a fuc*ing terrorist, period. #GermanWingsCrash

— Mike Spudgun (@spudgun01) March 26, 2015

It seems to me that this is the first thing that we can all agree on. He was a terrorist. Whether he was a Muslim, a Christian, a Jew, an atheist or a worshiper of trees is unknown, but a terrorist he was.

An important thing to consider is whether his religion, if any, is relevant to his terroristic act. French authorities don’t seem to care much about this.

IBTimes:

During the news conference, French prosecutor Brice Robin refused to give information on Andreas Lubitz’s religion, saying: “I don’t think it’s necessarily what we should be looking for.”

Concerns that people may seek to blame everyone who shares the religion (or atheism, or whatever ideology) of Andreas Lubitz are, I think, valid. Such blame comes from resentment, and resentment can itself be a cause of violence. Information that can only lead to resentment is probably information that is best not shared. Having said that, it is troubling that prosecutors say they are not even “looking for” his religion. If a cleric incited him to this act, then that cleric should be prosecuted.

Terrorism is terrorism, regardless of who commits it and regardless of the rationale. Incitement to terrorism should be prosecuted regardless of whether it was religious in nature. I hope the French prosecution will become more willing to look into every aspect of Lubitz’s background and not just those parts of his background that had nothing to do with his religion. It could be that there are guilty parties running freely about. Giving them immunity in advance is unwise.

Cruz: All Talk, No Listening

ted_cruzOn Monday, Senator Ted Cruz surprised many by announcing his candidacy for president far sooner than any potential candidate was expected to announce. It appears that he may benefit financially, at least initially, by announcing early as donations for the conservative firebrand have begun to pour in. Does Cruz have staying power? I think not. Christian conservative Texan Heath Mayo puts it best.

 

From his Facebook posting as linked:

As a conservative, I may support most of what Cruz says. Obamacare should be repealed and replaced with a patient-centered alternative. The President’s recent executive actions on immigration should be revoked. Our tax code is chaotic and makes absolutely no sense. Most Republicans agree with Cruz’s talking points – but, if the last 8 years of President Obama have taught us anything, it is that the presidency requires more than a good speech. It requires the sobering experience of governing and managing – of doing the hard things to bring people together. A principled conservative in the White House is of no use without the skills to mete out those principles in tangible governing results. Nothing in Cruz’s set of professional experiences remotely suggests he has acquired those skills – and Obama has taught us the fatal mistake of trusting a candidate to pick them up on the job.

Even more damaging would be the signal that Cruz’s winning the nomination would send to future GOP presidential hopefuls on how to successfully prepare to run for President. As a party, we should expect to get what we vote for and reward. We should demand proven leadership manifested through tangible conservative legislative accomplishment and successful governing records – not grandstanding political stunts and intraparty scapegoating. A Cruz nomination would invite increased divisiveness in the party as future hopefuls sought to mirror Cruz’s strategy of appealing aggressively to a single strand of the party and country. That is not a recipe for either long-term party success or conservative progress.

Mayo links a Wall Street Journal editorial that lays out the case against Cruz even further.

His strategists are saying openly that Mr. Cruz won’t even try to appeal to political independents. His strategy will be to attract and motivate the millions of conservatives who didn’t vote in the last two presidential elections. In this sense, too, he will run as the mirror-image of President Obama in 2012. Polarize and conquer.

The truth is that Cruz’s polarization has cost him so many friends that he has to “attract and motivate” non-voting conservatives rather than Republicans and independents in order to have any hope for election because Republicans and independents have long since rejected his style.

In my own mind, the deal-breaker was his horrific decision to walk out on the Christians of the Middle East, effectively leaving them to face ISIS alone and without U.S. help should he become president, all because a handful of them booed his evangelical Zionist theology as delivered in a speech at the In Defense of Christians Summit.

As reported at Catholic News Service:

“He made it very clear about defense of Jews and defense of Christians, but he did not mention defense of Muslims,” said Bishop Mansour. He said everyone at the conference had been “very careful to defend the best of the Muslim tradition and to condemn the worst in it.”

The bishop noted that 18 congressmen and senators had had talks with the Christian leaders on Capitol Hill without any kind of animosity.

After Cruz left the stage, one of the event organizers chastised the crowd, and In Defense of Christians posted a statement on its website from its president, Toufic Baaklini:

“As (Lebanese) Cardinal (Bechara) Rai so eloquently put it to the attendees of the In Defense of Christians’ inaugural summit gala dinner: ‘At every wedding, there are a few problems.’ In this case, a few politically motivated opportunists chose to divide a room that for more than 48 hours sought unity in opposing the shared threat of genocide, faced not only by our Christian brothers and sisters, but our Jewish brothers and sisters and people of all other faiths and all people of good will.

“Tonight’s injection of politics when the focus should have been on unity and faith momentarily played into the hands of a few who do not adhere to IDC’s principles. They were made no longer welcome,” the statement said, without indicating whether that meant the hecklers or Cruz.

Catholic criticism of Ted Cruz was, very rightly, nearly universal with rival publications National Catholic Register and National Catholic Reporter unified in disdain. With one speech, Ted Cruz certainly became a uniter in bringing those two publications politically in tune with each other, a generally impossible feat. Unfortunately for him, though, they were united against his message.

This sort of behavior may play well with a large enough segment of people to energize a campaign, but it is not a winning message that unites America. To the contrary, it is reminiscent of the same kind of divisive, identity-based politics of the Left that is harmful to our country. I wish Mr. Cruz well, but something tells me that he cares much more about fundraising and appealing to a fan base than he does about winning the election. Even if you agree with him, you should be wary to back someone who politicizes human sufferings, particularly of people of faith, so recklessly.

 

Ted Cruz switched to country music from classic rock because of 9/11

ted_cruzThis is just weird.

AL.com:

“Music is interesting,” said Cruz. “I grew up listening to classic rock, and I’ll tell you sort of an odd story. My music taste changed on 9/11 … I actually intellectually find this very curious, but on 9/11, I didn’t like how rock music responded. And country music, collectively, the way they responded, it resonated with me.”

[…]

“I had an emotional reaction that said these are my people,” said Cruz. “And so ever since 2001, I listen to country music, but I’m an odd country music fan because I didn’t listen to it prior to 2001.”

No words.

I prefer classic rock, myself, and it does’t make me any less a patriot or less moral.

In particular, I like Eminence Front by The Who that rightly tells us a lot of people are fakers who are just putting us on. Be careful of fakers.

 

Prayer request for Lara Logan of 60 Minutes

60 Minutes correspondent Lara Logan
60 Minutes correspondent Lara Logan

In my previous post, I shared a report by Lara Logan of 60 Minutes on the persecution of Christians in Iraq. Few reporters have offered us the truth about what has been happening in the Middle East during and since the Arab Spring. Lara Logan is, in my opinion, the best, hands down. Unfortunately, she is now in the hospital due to complications from a brutal sexual assault against her in Egypt during the Arab Spring uprising.

I beg your prayers for her.

More at Mediaite.

60 Minutes: Iraq’s Christians Persecuted By ISIS

60 Minutes correspondent Lara Logan
60 Minutes correspondent Lara Logan

The great Lara Logan offered a report at 60 Minutes last night on the persecution of Christians by ISIS. Watch the video here.

Hat-tip, International Christian Concern

Just another Catholic mom