***DISCLAIMER*** I don't believe all men are effeminate, but I definitely think there is a tendency for popular society to pigeonhole men into being seen as aggressive monsters or metrosexual children. Given I married a man who is neither, I obviously understand that not all men are effeminate. That being said, there are glaring problems with the way society tries to feminize men (and coax women into masculinity). For most of this entry, I'll be focusing on the gents.
I know you folks are likely burned out on all the hullabaloo about Fifty Shades. Truthfully, I haven't read any articles on Fifty Shades because I'm incredibly disinterested in the entire thing. However, a male friend of mine pointed something out that started what I felt to be an interesting discussion.
Someone posted a photo of the actors portraying the main characters in the upcoming film adaptation. There were comments from women (and a few men) commenting on the "hotness" of Jamie Dornan (the actor portraying Christian Grey).
Someone mentioned something about the movie (and book) being porn for women. Magic Mike (another soft-porn, mainstreamed movie) was also brought up and then the conversation veered into "Why the sudden interest in porn for women?"
I'm relatively certain that most of my readership would agree that Magic Mike, Fifty Shades and its contemporary ilk are pornographic in nature. That's not the point of this entry.
I pointed out that the reason this sort of porn is taking root amongst women is due to the concerted effort to confuse, diminish and transpose traditional gender roles.
In other words, society is telling women that they should be more masculine while simultaneously telling men they need to be more feminine.
I personally know men who use more makeup and hair products than I do. It's fine for guys to thoughtfully put themselves together in the morning, but when they start insisting on getting waxed eyebrows, mani/pedis and plumping their lips with a touch of gloss... lines are crossed.
I get the term "metrosexual" is thrown around a lot, but that's simply a politically correct way of saying:
And it's not just a physical change. Due to the feminist movement that seeks to butcher boys instead of raising up women, things like "Girls Rule and Boys Drool" or the "Boys are Stupid" mindset have turned men into caricatures of petty neanderthals. Not only does society treat them as perennial little boys who are incapable of mature thought or action, but men, themselves, take on this view and don't realize the rut they've been thrust into.
And since men don't realize that they've slowly given up the respect due to them as men, women don't feel the need to give it to them. After all, why respect a man who is no man at all?
It's yet another reason we've got an epidemic of boy-men who live in a quasi-fantasy world that is free of most adult responsibilities, adult goals, and adult consequences. Women, in turn, get frustrated because they can't find men with solid male traits, but in reality, we've brought this on ourselves by attempting to become masculine in how we operate.
This goes beyond the "assertive / bossy" dilemma. I'm all for equal rights and gender not standing in the way of one's ability to get a job done. However, women are becoming increasingly aggressive in their treatment of others. This overcompensation stems from a deep-seated insecurity about their strength and place within a patriarchal framework (and let's be honest - we do have a patriarchal framework in the US workforce).
In order to keep up or get ahead, women admit that they try to be "more manly" because of its social and professional benefits.
Again, this reinforces the gender-bending dysphoria present in our social fabric.
So what does all of this have to do with Fifty Shades, you ask?
I believe the current role-reversal of men and women makes traditional male and female roles a fetish.
I realize that might seem silly at first, especially since most of you wouldn't concede to BDSM (present in the Fifty Shades series) being traditional, but give me a chance to explain...
Currently, society is telling us this:
Obviously we know better, but this is the picture society is attempting to paint for us (with alarming success).
As a result, a book like Fifty Shades becomes popular not just because BDSM is a fetish. The fetish (and why I think women enjoy it so much) is that the roles are swapped into their traditional (if highly denigrated) roles.
But what is a fetish if not the warping of something natural?
Christian Grey is an intelligent, successful, confident man. Ana Steele is an innocent, quietly supportive woman who is also intelligent but not nearly as confident as Grey. In fact, from what I understand, she's actually portrayed as being highly insecure.
Christian makes it known that he's interested in Ana. He wants Ana and revels in her feminine qualities. He appreciates her femininity. She, in turn, appreciates his thoroughly masculine characteristics.
BDSM is a warping of the connection between male and female love, but again, I don't think that's the biggest thing that matters in this case. Women, today, are craving men - REAL MEN - and our options are few courtesy of the contraceptive movement (<---- that's a great video!).
As a result, women are getting their fix for the socially taboo "traditional man" by finding him in the pages of an erotic book. They can fantasize of the real man they envision for themselves... a strong, confident, savvy man who knows what he wants and takes it.
Grey is not the stammering guy in class who is unsure how to ask a girl for her number. Grey would never wonder when the right time to kiss a girl would be. Grey certainly wouldn't be found in his mother's basement or fiddling away on XBox until 3 in the morning.
No no. Grey would appreciate the beauty of the woman standing in front of him. He'd instinctually know her wants and needs and willingly rise to the challenge of meeting them. He'd provide for her, take care of her, and make her feel loved, appreciated and above all, wanted.
THIS is precisely what women today do not get from men. This is what they want. This is why they go looking for it in pornography, because in our topsy-turvy world, pornography is somehow more socially acceptable than expecting our men to be men.
Again, I obviously don't believe all women fall victim to this given that I don't even fit this mindset. However, it's incredibly easy to see how and why so many women fall into this trap given the terribly difficult time we have finding men who have the potential to be suitable life-partners and dependable fathers for our children.
Frankly, women don't put long-term stock in a guy who wears more eyeliner than she does. Women don't trust that a guy who lives in Mommy's basement can provide for a family. Women understand that a guy who spends more time caressing a game console than they do the curves of her body doesn't have his priorities in order.
So yeah - I believe the current satiation women are finding in socially acceptable forms of pornography is symptomatic of a much larger, deeper and socially threatening issue. When the gender norms are blurred to the point where folks have a legitimately difficult time knowing if someone is a man or a woman, it's time to reevaluate - everything.
= Gina turning in her Cardinal Dolan fangirl card.
Remember this past March when the big kerfluffle was caused by gay pride groups during the St. Patrick's Day parades in NY and Boston? Yeah... things are going to get a whole lot more kerfluffle-y now that Cardinal Dolan decided to come out with this.
If this isn't confusing to folks, I don't know what is.
I respect Cardinal Dolan as a priest; I do. I just don't understand his desire to appease and coddle. Loving thy neighbor does not include sanctioning public celebration of his or her sin.
Then again, with the way we've allowed the celebration of St. Patrick to be turned into an excuse to celebrate lewdness, intoxication and common brawling, I guess we shouldn't be too surprised when the door's been left open to more moral degradation.
But still, this (coupled with the cause for Venerable Fulton Sheen) is incredibly, INCREDIBLY disappointing.
There's a petition making its way around social media seeking to revoke a ban barring homosexual men from donating blood.
I've seen several impassioned messages accompanying the re-posting of this petition in support of revoking the ban. However, something struck me about these impassioned pleas to revoke the ban and "restore to gay men their dignity."
None of them - NOT ONE - made an appeal using facts. Each and every posting was geared to strike at the emotional / psychological heart of the reader. In doing a bit of digging, I realized why.
Should anyone use factual evidence to support their desire to revoke this ban, they'd come up short - severely short. The FDA regulations are incredibly clear about the risk factors present when blood from gay men is used. They didn't just decide "We think gay men have cooties so no donations from them!"
Instead, they acknowledged that gay men have an extraordinarily high rate of infection - exponentially higher than any other sampling of the population. Given there is no real test for HIV that can definitively test if someone has it or not in the early stages (called a "window period" after exposure), the gamble is simply not worth the lives of others. Even with earlier tests, it takes between 1-3 months to test positive.
In other words, the FDA believes that the need for gay men to feel validation through blood donation DOES NOT outweigh the risk they collectively present to the general population. Given that gay men make up such a tiny portion of our population, the public at large shouldn't be forced to play Russian Roulette with a transfusion simply so they can have another avenue to feel justified in their lifestyle.
We currently have enough donors who fit regulation guidelines. Why in the world would we seek to change protective regulations that were created based on solid science? These impassioned pleas for a restoration of dignity are sad.
I mean that. They make me sad.
Do sexually active gay men see their own self-worth as being found solely at the end of a syringe? Do they truly believe they hold no worth outside of their ability to strap a rubber band around their arm while squeezing a tension ball?
That's sad. That's really, really sad.
They should recognize their own self-worth through their humanity. They need no more validation than that which their humanity affords. Men do not have less dignity because they are unable to bear children just as sexually active gay men do not have less dignity because they pose a higher risk for blood donation.
A common argument in favor of repealing the ban is the fact that tainting can happen in other ways - needle sharing, heterosexual sex with infected partners, etc. Several posters posted about an episode of The Golden Girls which raised this same point.
While tainting can happen in other ways, the risk in those areas is quantifiably lower than in cases where blood from active homosexual men is used.
This has nothing to do with discrimination or lack of dignity - this has everything to do with the HIV epidemic that spread like wildfire through (and continues to ravage at an exponentially higher rate) the sexually active gay male community.
If and when our medical savvy gets to the point where we can screen more quickly and efficiently, by all means, feel free to repeal the ban. We haven't reached that point yet, so there is NO SCIENTIFIC REASON to alter the ban.
I'm sorry, but the hurt feelings of a few people (because again, contrary to what the media force feeds everyone, homosexuals make up only a tiny portion of the general population) don't justify the heartbreak their blood potentially poses to people who could just as easily rely on blood we've already amassed through approved donors.
The emotional arguments are impassioned and moving, but they simply do not stand up to logical scrutiny. This doesn't make me a bigot, this doesn't make me a homophobe, this doesn't make me heartless. I recognize the emotions of gay men who feel their status is somehow diminished by their inability to participate in a charitable activity, but I also recognize the valid reasons the FDA has for putting the ban into effect to begin with. I recognize the fear of those who rely on blood donations. In truth, the latter two trump the former.
It's not worth the risk.
And again - gay men shouldn't be basing their worth on what they can or cannot do. No one should. Everyone has inherent worth in the eyes of God. Everyone.
Children and Gender Confusion
Remember this article? I feel like it was the one that started them all.
Little boy wants to dress up like Daphne from Scooby Doo and his mom posts, in the title of her entry, that this implies he's gay.
But no worries, because in the body of the entry, you realize that was simply a bait. She then writes "Or he's not. I don't care. He is still my son. And he is 5. And I am his mother. And if you have a problem with anything mentioned above, I don't want to know you."
I remember when I first read that feeling offended for her. How could ANYONE dare to have a problem with this? Who would think to be so callous as to spout anything negative at a little boy who just wants to dress up for Halloween? Even if it is a little odd.
Now that the feeds have been absolutely SATURATED with stories like this, I've learned to put my critical reasoning skills to better use.
She, like every other blogger after her, sets the stage for inevitable conflict. They want the conflict; it drives stats. I refuse to post the litany of these articles because I refuse to give them a bump in referral hits.
Now I just roll my eyes and pass on them. They're all the same. Each demanding respect for allowing their boys to dress as girls and play with My Little Pony dolls, or steering their girls away from pink things and more towards "boy toys" like race cars and Legos. We've all seen them. It's just...
Instead of trying to dictate what our kids play with in an attempt to show how forward-thinking we are about gender-stereotypes, how about we just let them be kids who like to play with toys of any sort?
And how about we stop patting ourselves on the back for going out of our way to confuse the very clear distinctions between the two sexes. No matter how many bags of lip gloss your son wants to have, he's going to be a little boy. No matter how many Wrestlemanias your daughter begs to go to, she's still going to be a little girl.
And no matter how many times you allow your son to dress in skirts or your daughter to pull on boxers, their biology will remain unaltered. That includes sex change operations and hormone injections.
Also, this sort of gender confusion does not necessarily mean your child is gay. But again, throwing that into the mix is a great way to solicit a jump in stats.
We need to have open, honest communication on this topic. Blog posts like those I reference above are not helpful. If anything, they're harmful because they seek to divide. They seek to cause in-fighting and paranoia (everyone's out to get me and my son because we're different!). There are children in serious jeopardy because of this confusion, and patting ourselves on the backs for the bang-up job we're doing with this saturation of gender confusion is not the right course of action. It's just not.
I don't have the answer on how best to respond to this growing trend, but I just can't take the constant stream of articles that decry any sort of acknowledgement that boys and girls (and thus, men and women) are different; they are. Does that mean that they are not equals? No; they have equal dignity. But they are inherently different from one another. Consistently ignoring that (and worse... teaching our children to actively ignore it) is a
Kids growing up in this climate are the reason we've got fifty billion "genders" on Facebook, men waging legal war against a woman's right to use a private bathroom, and young kids (and their PARENTS) fighting to dictate biology without bothering to think of long-term health consequences.
This is only the tip of the iceberg. Trying to blur the lines between male and female have led folks to be hyper-aware of not only gender, but sexuality and thus, sex.
Methinks that's why textbooks like this exist. It's also why lessons like this exists.
We are hurting our children way, WAY more than we are helping them. That much is apparent. We are teaching them it's okay to disregard facts - scientific facts - and create an alternate reality that they then expect everyone else to go along with. I can't imagine that being a good coping strategy for such a real, all-areas-of-life entrenched problem.
I just don't have clue one where to begin, or even how to protect my son from falling victim to this sort of confusion. It's like parents are expected (and even bullied into) encouraging this sort of behavior.
I was recently invited to a birthday party with my son in which the parent informed me the boys would be dressing up as princesses alongside the girls.
No thank you. I opted to decline that one. Vince is curious about women's clothing sometimes (my veil and bras come to mind), but I would not actively encourage him cross dressing, ESPECIALLY at such a young age.
I'm just... ay.
What the heck ever happened to kids being kids?
Well, the gay rights lobby is at it again with their fake indignation and trumped up discrimination allegations.
I'm just about done with them whining about every little thing that doesn't coddle their every self-centered inclination.
By now, I'm sure most of you have seen the kerfluffle caused by trolls at the annual St. Patrick's Day Parades in New York and Boston.
These are two of the biggest parades in the world that celebrate St. Patrick's life and legacy. Of COURSE these yahoos would take it upon themselves to instigate trouble when they'd have a worldwide audience.
I just hate that companies and politicians went and supported this stupidity without stopping to question the legitimacy of those doing the whining.
They're upset because they can't run around with banners labeling them as gay? Cry me a rainbow river, why don't you?
Pro-Life groups can't march under a banner any more than gay groups can. Where are all the pro-life unions that are decrying that their dignity is being threatened? Where are all the Italian-Americans? Where are all the lovers of ice-cream and chocolate? The pro-puppy groups?
Oh yeah - none of them have anything to gain by feigning discrimination. None of them are looking to bait an entire population into feeling sorry for them.
ARGH - I'm so sick of people stupidly falling for this. How did our population come to exchange common sense and critical reasoning for Kim Kardashian and buzz words?
I'm just so beyond done with always being labeled a bigot or a homophobe because I see this for the charade it so blatantly is.
This sort of fake discrimination touted by the gay lobby is BLATANTLY FALSE and no one seems to care. Why does no one care?!?!?!
Club Divorcée: Backstory
I've been sitting on this post for a week now. Actually, it's been brewing for longer than a week, but last Wednesday really sparked up some irritation regarding a few divorced women I know and their overt "We're awesome because our ex-husbands are evil people" pride.
I was at a meeting that devolved into a debate over our deacon's homily the previous weekend. I'd gone to a different parish that weekend on account of being sick (I missed my normal mass by an hour), so I was all sorts of curious to know what the hullabaloo was about.
Apparently our deacon preached about the sanctity of marriage and decided to use his God-given vocation to state, unequivocally, that homosexual marriage goes against the Law of God, and that to participate in such unions is a mortal sin. He also delved into the murky area of divorce and why those who sought Communion with the Church after such civil proceedings were dealing with mortal sin. Considering so many people are unaware of this, it's important to teach these things from the pulpit every now and again (especially with divorce rates being as high as they are).
I must've had the most confused look on my face. At first I thought the person relaying the "problem" was joking.
I actually said, "So people are upset that he's speaking the truth?"
I looked over to my council-mate who gave me the same stunned look of confusion I knew I was wearing. He said, "I was there. I heard the homily. I have no idea what the problem is, either."
This was met with the response of "Deacon Strong (as henceforth I'll call him) needs to learn to be more politically correct. You don't just alienate a bunch of parishioners by throwing that stuff in their faces all the time. He didn't need to talk about marriage at all. It was pointless, and he upset a lot of people. A LOT of people."
Now, you need to understand the dynamics of the table at this point. I was sitting at the head with our pastor, a great and wonderful priest. He was relatively silent at this point since I think he was genuinely trying to understand the complaint being lodged. On one side of the table, there were a few council members who seemed to agree with the complaint being lodged against Deacon Strong. On the other side of the table were those of us who were confused that there was a complaint at all.
How strange is that? We all ended up sitting in such a way that we actually split ourselves down the middle regarding supporters and not-so-supportive supporters of Deacon Strong ('cause everyone loves Deacon Strong - just not that particular homily).
Anyway, still being completely confused, I pointed out the fact that all of the readings for that weekend were, in fact, about marriage. Of course his homily would reflect that. Of course he would want to talk about the sanctity of marriage in light of those readings. Him speaking the truth in light of the readings is not "throwing it" in anyone's face.
Plus, I've heard enough homilies between he and our pastor... that would've been the first peep I'd've heard from either of them (from the pulpit) regarding homosexuals marrying / divorcees lining up for Communion. So to accuse Deacon Strong of "throwing it" in anyone's face is absolutely LUDICROUS.
I then pointed out that we were in the middle of the 40 days for Life event that's been pushed by the Bishops. Marriage is considered the foundation for life. It is through marriage that the gift of life is supposed to be given to the world. It is through marriage that this gift can be fostered and nurtured into another vessel of love which can continue the cycle of love through marriage and subsequent children. In fact, to hit home that point, many parishes throughout the country were doing special blessings over married couples during the Mass.
So yes... again... MARRIAGE WAS THE POINT OF THE HOMILY THAT WEEKEND.
After pointing that out, the response was "Jesus didn't come to condemn anyone. We need to love everyone as God made them."
I immediately retorted with "Jesus came to DIVIDE. And He did! He said some really hard things that got a whole lot of people angry. In fact, it's why He ended up dying on a cross."
And to her credit, the woman lodging the complaint was simply trying to do her job as a council-member considering there were "lots" of people upset with the homily. I wasn't upset with her so much as the fact that people were getting this up-in-arms over something that EVERYONE KNOWS.
Catholics don't believe in homosexual marriage and we don't believe that divorce is copasetic in the Eyes of God. As this entry so clearly expresses, divorce is a painful, messy business. Homosexual unions very obviously undermine the sanctity of true marriage. These are basic truths of our faith. They shouldn't come as surprises to folks. I mean, do people feel as though the Blessed Mother's virginity is thrown in their faces every week (considering it's part of the creed and all)? So when these issues of homosexual unions or divorced Catholics come up once in a blue moon, why all of the sudden the theatrics with storming out of the church or declaring yourself an Evangelical?
You have no right to act surprised, offended or indignant that no one told you about this part of the faith.
I'm all for walking out the door when you come to terms with the fact that you don't believe in what we preach. But attempting to vilify the person who is telling you what you already know simply because he's saying it out loud and not pretending like the Church teaches something different?
No no, good friend. Methinks you're at the wrong party.
And what finally solicited this particular entry was the fact that one of the women at the meeting took this opportunity to glory in her role as a divorced Catholic.
I've heard jokes in passing on several occasions, but I typically keep my mouth completely shut when it comes to folks talking about their ex-spouses. I, like most people, I'm sure, steer clear of that topic like it is the Plague.
However, the joke was timed to coincide with the bragging of a different woman altogether. This woman is someone I speak to often. She divorced about 10 years ago and was - that very morning - bragging about how she was so glad to be rid of her husband, how much better she was doing without him, wishing him nothing but misery, and touting herself as free and able to be with who she wanted, do what she wanted, and not care one way or the other. Oh, but isn't it so great to be divorced???
She was doing this with a mutual friend of ours, another divorcee. I was in the room, and was by default assumed to be part of the conversation. I simply kept my mouth shut. Both women were gloating about their freedom and how much it sucked to be married to such terrible men. Then they turned their attention to me - silent little Gina - and I got exactly what I'd been dreading.
Pedophilia and Psychology
Fr. Levi over at The Way Out There posted another article regarding the slipping of society as it falls further into the cesspool of degradation and disorder it seems hellbent on creating for itself.
The article deals with the "plight" of pedophiles who are demanding to be accepted as normal in the same way that homosexuals are now deemed "normal." Incredibly, there are psychologists who want to help this along by removing Pedophilia from the list of mental disorders they list in their version of the Bible - the DSM.
In an attempt to make people more aware that this was happening, I posted the link (along with the following commentary) onto my Facebook page:
'Cause no one saw this coming...
NAMBLA has been attempting to push for declassification of pedophilia for a while. So has IASHS. Homosexuality issue aside, this is severely disturbing that anyone in their right damn mind thinks it's even remotely okay to declassify this as a mental disorder.
Adults wanting to have sex with children is mentally disordered. There's simply no other way of looking at it.
"Oh, but these poor men and women who abused children must live with the stigma attached! They've gotta warn parents when they move into the area! They've gotta have 'the talk' with potential employers!"
Oh flippin' well. What about the children whose lives you shattered? What about what THEY are forced to endure for the rest of their lives?
You get to deal with moments of social awkwardness every now and again. They get to deal with shattered innocence, a void of trust, a shamed self-image, and the stigma of having endured your barbarity.
Your whining behind is lucky we don't still brand people on the forehead. Stop attempting to justify your mental disorder and just accept it for what it is so you can seek help to protect those children who you seek to harm!
BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT YOU'RE DOING! I don't care how much you think you love these children, you're outta your dang mind.
About 30 seconds later I got a "like" and an "AGREED!" comment (both from a family member of mine). Another minute or so later, my good friend posted a video of the South Park parody that deals with NAMBLA's insistence that pedophilia is normal. Otherwise, there was complete radio silence.
Now I'm not upset that I didn't get "likes" or "comments." That's not why I post things. I post them to educate... to make others aware. However, I have to admit being slightly unsettled by the lack of feedback regarding this particular post. Typically things this upsetting in nature solicit SOMETHING.
My first thought was "Folks are steering clear of this because of the connection with homosexuality. It makes them uneasy."
Well of course it does. No one likes to look at the truth of this logic because it's somewhat similar to the crazy folks out there shouting that once we accept homosexuality, we'll accept people marrying goats, sheep or dinosaurs.
However, the fact remains that when a minority of folks force others to accept disordered conduct as a product of "It's just the way I am" then other minorities are able to do the same. They're able to use the same arguments and the same tactics because from a logical standpoint, they've got accepted precedence.
So I chalked it up to the fact that the majority of my friends are very pro-homosexual marriage and were bristling at the idea that I was advocating homosexuality and pedophilia being on the same wavelength (which I'm not... but people tend to automatically assume that about those of us who disagree with homosexual unions).
The next morning, though, I got two supremely disturbing messages through Facebook from a family member and an acquaintance I had gone to school with. The first was from a family member who is both a woman, and a mother. A MOTHER. Keep that in mind. The second was also from a woman (though she has no children).
Both stated very similar things, so I'll give you a quick summary.
Gina, I would've posted this on your thread, but I didn't want to look like I condoned molestation. The psychologists make a good argument for why pedophilia should be removed from the disorder list because they (the pedophilies) really can't help themselves. It's unfair to be stigmatized for your entire life because of feelings you can't help. They shouldn't have to suffer so cruelly just because they have strong affection for children. They're good people, and they really try to love everyone. There are chemical imbalances that make them aroused around children, and with the proper medicines, they could live out normal lives that don't involve harming children.
One even went so far as to suggest that children SHOULD be allowed to make the decision for themselves by the time they're 12 because "by that age, I was fully capable of deciding who I should or should not have sex with."
Go ahead and let that digest a little bit.
This person was 12 years old and already felt capable of deciding who she should or should not have sex with. This means she was ALREADY deciding she SHOULD have sex with some folks (note that 'folks' is plural) at 12 years of age.
Below is exactly how I felt upon reading those two letters. I wanted to blast myself off the Earth because no... there is just no way that people can really, truly feel this way. I simply do not want to live in a world that wishes to allow such perversion to walk around unabated because it's "just how they are." NO. My SON lives in this world, and allowing these folks to just "be who they are" without needing to warn ANY of the surrounding families leaves him open to some terrible, terrible things!
I promptly wrote back (with less charity than I should have, I'm ashamed to admit) that they were part of the problem.
I was so taken aback by the mother who agreed with this declassification. She has children! How would she feel if we just allowed these people to move from town to town completely undetected so they could harm more children? If her son or her daughter were abused by a pedophile who was disordered to the point of thinking the abuse is not only OK, but DESIRED by her child, how would she feel when this person was allowed to move on to a new city to begin the process again? How would she feel knowing her child could have been protected had society treated pedophilia as the mental disorder it is???
She wrote back that people do take pedophilia seriously. No one wants to see children hurt by adults in any manner. There were ways to control those desires, she said.
I agree. There ARE ways of controlling those desires, but ya know what's a great deterrent? Knowing that everyone is keeping an eye on you.
And the only way that folks really learn you're a pedophile is when you get caught... which means that you've already abused someone in the past in some way. So guess what? Punishment is that you get marked going forward as someone likely to harm a child. Ya know why? Because studies have shown that much like homosexuality, pedophilia isn't something that can be "cured." It's simply a disorder of the brain. It is a lifelong cross for those who bear it.
Does that make pedophilias horrible, awful people? No. Not at all. Much like the rest of us, they've got a particular cross to bear, and this is it. It's a terrible one. But considering how much danger they pose to children - the most innocent among us - this cross NEEDS to be public. It NEEDS to be shared, because it is only in sharing this cross that they will be given the proper direction and support necessary to shoulder it properly. The public NEEDS to help them, and that help will arrive in the form of policing their activities. Not necessarily in an over-bearing "Who are you seeing today?" sort of way, but in an "We know you have an issue and we want to make sure that no temptations come your way... and if they do, you are able to handle them in the proper way because you know we're looking out for you" sort of way.
The only way for us to be able to "look out" for them is through knowing they've got an issue. Knowing they've got a disorder is the only way we know to remove the temptation should it arise.
Bah - I'll have to write more coherently later. I just wanted to get that out there because I've been meaning to write about it for a while. It's been banging around in my head since first reading it, and I can't help but feel completely unsettled that there are folks out there trying to push for this declassification.
Anyone have experience with this? Any words of wisdom on language to use to counter-act this line of thinking?
Names were changed. This is the transcript of a conversation I had with a man who underwent gender reassignment surgery (and hormone therapy) to become a physical woman. He is still struggling with it (even after completing it several years ago).
I felt this conversation important to post publicly because it's a conversation we should all be ready to handle as issues of gender dysphoria seem to be more common. People who struggle under the weight of this cross deserve love and respect. We each have our crosses, but we must support one another to carry them with dignity.
For an easier read, just click "Fullscreen" on the tab below. :)
I'm simply going to repost my FB status here with a few points since I don't see it necessary to re-invent the wheel.
Anyone who thought that Chick-fil-a didn't adhere to the Christian morality it calmly demonstrates in all facets of its existence is a fool.
CFA founders have never forced their beliefs onto others. They simply live out their faith and have made no bones about it. It's folks who are just realizing the founders are Christian that are making a mountain out of a mole-hill.
Everyone's up in arms because the Jim Henson Company pulled out. However, they didn't pull out because they support same-sex marriage. If that were the case, they never would've stood behind CFA to begin with.
Instead, they pulled out because it's a smart PR move considering the massive amount of publicity they're now getting as a result of the gay-pride lobby.
Smart move on their part, but I don't see why folks are coming down on CFA for simply doing what they've always done. Serve delicious chicken and try to model their business in a way that adheres to their particular belief set (which, again, they're not forcing on anyone).
They still hire folks regardless of sexuality, they won't refuse service if you and your gay lover walk in, and they certainly won't attempt to herd you off to concentration camps (which has been proposed as fact by more than one individual).
If you're going to boycott them, great! I'm in full support of you utilizing your God-given intellect and putting your purchasing dollars behind your particular belief set.
However, what I won't support the complete betrayal of intellectual honesty. If you want to boycott them, boycott them for valid reasons. Don't just jump ship and declare CFA to be minions of Satan.
Don't boycott them because you're mother's brother's friend's sister told you that they hate homosexuals (because no one ever said that).
Don't boycott them because you were told by someone on TV that they are secretly funneling money into a top secret organization that is actively working to kill homosexuals (because they don't actually do that).
And certainly don't boycott them because you read somewhere that they wish cancer upon anyone who walks through the doors to eat there.
Oh wait... that was this classy, tolerant and loving homosexual marriage supporter who did that. My bad.
Point is, do what you will under the prudence of your own conscience. No one should judge you one way or the other for it. However, just make sure that you've got all your facts straight and you aren't going on a bender accusing this company and its founders of being evil, monstrous people when - in all reality - they've done nothing but live by the same faith they've always lived by.
And that faith does NOT call for death of homosexuals.
So to all you folks calling for CFA to burn in hell for supporting well-documented beliefs (that don't interfere with business) take a moment and consider the hypocrisy of that little gem.
Also (and thanks to Cam from A Woman's Place for this one) take a moment to ponder this one while you're at it:
A recent comment from a friend of mine has led me to this entry. He chooses to use a feminine pronoun for God. That's well and good. Considering his reasoning, it makes sense. God is tender, compassionate and merciful, and he feels as though these attributes have a feminine ring to them. Plus, considering that pronouns do little justice to the all-encompassing Spirit that is God, why not give some air-time to an under-utilized pronoun such as "she."
That's fair. I'm not writing this to alter his opinion on the matter. I thought it an interesting topic to delve into, so here I go!
Why do I choose to use "He" when referencing God?
For one, Christ is male. He (and all His Jewish ancestors before Him) referred to God using masculine words, and all parables which describe God use male persons as corresponding symbols: father, bridegroom, rabbi, king, judge.
Why might that be? After all, in Genesis, it does say God made humans "male and female" after His own image, right? Does that mean God is a hermaphrodite?
Not so much.
We humans tend to think of everything on a physical realm because we're physical beings. However, we're also spiritual beings, having been gifted souls that are intrinsically united to our bodies. Our souls contain the neshama of God. THAT is the the part of God that makes us "like unto Him." That's the part that separates us from the rest of creation.
Since God's neshama is neither male nor female (it is simply a gift of His Being - specifically His Wisdom and Power to understand and choose good over evil), that phrase in Genesis isn't referring to a physical likeness of God. It's referring to a spiritual likeness in which humans are granted a very specific dignity.
The best way of explaining this that I've seen comes from the Catholic Patriot. He wrote:
I might not agree with all that Catholic Patriot has to say on this subject, but I think the above succinctly captures my thoughts in a better way than I could. :)
Try as we might to label God, we can't do Him justice because our minds are simply not equipped with handling it. However, we've been given little glimpses here and there of what our God deems Himself to be, so far be it from me to go against the examples He laid forth through that of His Son - and His Son's reciprocal teachings of His "Father."
In a nutshell, that is why I choose masculine pronouns.
I mean, there's also things like the Blessed Mother being daughter, spouse and mother of God as well, but that's another conversation for another time. :)
Laws no longer protect but intimidate.
Thanks to Catholic Vote for seeding. This article details the plight of a young photographer who refused her services to a lesbian couple looking to have photos taken of their commitment ceremony (since homosexual unions aren't recognized or legal in New Mexico).
Instead of simply finding another photographer, these miscreants took Elaine (the photographer) to court. Apparently their poor little feelings were hurt because Elaine didn't want to take pictures of their ring-exchange. So what's any rational couple to do?
Silly me, if faced with such a decision, I'd simply type "photographer" into Google.
Apparently it's way more entertaining to sue the person. With this being the great country of America, it's incredibly easy to do considering we don't understand our own Constitution!
*Grumble grumble grumble*
As I said, the homosexual lobby is attempting to manipulate laws into forcing folks to accept their lifestyle choices. Instead of simply finding another photographer to take photos of their "special day," they wanted to drag this woman through the mud to make an example of her in order to put pressure on others who would deny services to protect their consciences.
Since when did people become so entitled to having the world conform to their opinions? Are they so really so insecure and desperate for acceptance that they're willing to stoop THIS LOW in order to intimidate folks into a false posturing of agreement?
For shame. For absolute shame.
Our 1st Amendment rights as US Citizens... for now.
I'm successfully irritated. My charity level is low to non-existent right now, so I apologize in advance.
There has been yet another striking blow to religious freedoms today... this time in Denmark. All over the world, governments are attempting to put religious freedom to death, and no one is any the wiser. Why? Because it's all being done under the guise of social justice.
Danish parliament has just passed a law making it MANDATORY for all churches in Denmark to provide homosexual marriage ceremonies.
Take a second and let that process (if you're not too busy hurling).
A government is attempting to FORCE entire religious communities to utilize their sacred houses of worship for a ceremony that goes directly against their religious beliefs as a people.
I'm beyond disgusted.
Once again the issue of religious freedoms is ignored because folks are too busy crying foul over the issue of homosexuality.
I don't care if two men want to get hitched through civil unions. Be my guest. I draw the line, however, when those two men attempt making a mockery of our Sacrament by committing such a sacrilege in front of the Blessed Sacrament in a Catholic Church.
As I said on Facebook, welcome to the reason I refuse to vote in favor of anyone trying to push this through our court system.
As I said in a previous entry, Australia is quickly following suit. The US won't be far behind.
I'm all for homosexuals getting hitched in churches that condone it. I am NOT okay with a government stepping in to force ANYONE to accept a union that cannot be recognized by aforementioned religion.
Catholic priests cannot "consecrate" a union that is considered abhorrent and inherently sinful. No matter how much a government wants to kick, scream and cry, a faithful Catholic priest cannot (and will not) call a blessing down upon that which is mortally sinful.
Even if one tried to, do you think God would say, "Ya know what? Alright... since you asked so nicely, I'll be sure to go against that which I've stated - repeatedly - and reward you for your impressively arrogant disobedience."
Again, Lord, mercy.
Target's Gay-'Marriage' Fundraiser
Hmmm... I had no idea this is what those "Harmony" shirts I've been seeing were all about.
Apparently folks are looking to boycott Target for it's current push to financially back the Family Equality Council (read: LGBT lobby). I was completely unaware of this until today!
I don't really have too much of an opinion on this just yet. Thus far, I don't see the donations as horrible because in order for me to participate, I'd have to be directly purchasing these "Pride" items.
I'd be happy if they'd offer something like Soaps for Life in their stores as a worthy cause to get behind. I doubt there would be a conservative call for boycott with something like that. The liberals might boycott, but the point is, if you don't support a cause, you're not being forced to purchase the items in question in this case. If Target was donating a portion of ALL sales to the FEC, I'd be singing a different tune. But they're not.
That being said, I expect to see well-placed signs and tags on these items so I can steer clear of them if I were to enter a Target. I don't want to mistakenly donate money to something that goes against my belief system - same as I'm sure a pro-abortion person would balk at seeing any of his or her money go into an ultrasound truck that sits in front of a Planned Parenthood for mothers who are on the fence. So long as signs and tags are visible and plenty, I wouldn't boycott Target itself so much as the particular line of products.
Kinda like boycotting a particular brand of make-up because they do animal testing, ya know? Obviously not the same level of morality, but my point still stands.
Playing with Fire
My friend, Christina, said something to me that has been bouncing around in my head for the last few days:
There's something about a fire that doesn't seem to burn you. [This] issue had fire written all over it and you just jumped on in like it was a bubble bath.
Ah... the story of my life.
Last week, when I wrote that "Alone" entry, I got several follow-up messages from the person the entry was originally about. He gave me permission to post his story here, because I honestly think it's something that folks should be aware of, especially those of us who are active on Christian blogs / forums.
While I was chatting with some folks on a Christian forum, a young man timidly asked for advice with an issue he'd been struggling with. We happily agreed to hear him out. He identifies himself as homosexual, he's 19, and he still lives home with his "strict Christian parents." He loves his parents dearly, but he hasn't "come out" to them, yet. He was looking for advice on how to best do it without having them disown him.
Within minutes the thread was lighting up with comments like:
"It's a phase." "Keep that to yourself until you get it fixed."
"You'll go to hell!" "You SHOULD be disowned."
"Homosexuality is a disease." ETC...
Seriously. I was absolutely FLOORED. I immediately jumped in to dispel the notion that his sexuality was a one-way ticket to hell that needed to be exchanged through a one-night stand with a woman (suggested by a particularly vulgar member who, until that point, had been the most proper one of the bunch!). I then pointed out that the various responses were less than Christian in content.
You'd think I stumbled upon a hellmouth or something. Not only was I trying to defend this person against attacks, I was on the receiving end, myself, with no hope of respite. To say anything contrary to "Gays are evil, hell-bound freaks of nature" was tantamount to painting yourself with a bulls-eye and handing out arrows during open season. I felt HORRIBLE because all that viciousness simply caused this young man to pull away, completely embarrassed, ashamed and hurt by the torrent of verbal abuse. Worse, he assumed that response was a unanimously Christian one because no one took a stand against it!!! Heaven forbid!
For the record:
Condemning a person is NOT CHRISTIAN CHARITY.
Suggesting that they commit a mortal sin in order to "reverse" another perceived mortal sin is NOT CHRISTIAN CHARITY.
Responding to a plea for help with vitriol and wishes for the emotional distress of family abandonment is NOT CHRISTIAN CHARITY.
This gentle young man and I have been blessed to have several discussions on this now. He now understands that regardless of his sexuality, he is a body and soul created and loved by God. He understands Catholic teaching on homosexuality, and though he doesn't agree with it, at least he doesn't believe Catholicism teaches he's got a sure-ticket to hell just for being attracted to other men. He also feels better about talking to his parents about this. After all, a parent's duty is to love above all else. Heck, our job as humans is to love above all else. Loving doesn't mean accepting the sins of another, but it DOES mean accepting the person for who they're made as and helping them carry the crosses uniquely granted by God to help them on their path towards Heaven.
Keep folks like this in your prayers. It takes a lot of courage to be upfront about your deepest struggles, especially when you've got the whole world ready to rip into you.
And this is why I tend to step into the fire with seemingly little regard for the flames. On the other end of the verbal assault, someone is feeling the effects. On the other side of the computer screen, someone is being made to feel subhuman. When these hot-button conversations ignite, there is someone, somewhere being given a very incorrect view of Christianity through the poor examples of those who laud themselves as being the epitome of Christian practice. I can't help but feel my own heart break for them.
So yes. I frequently involve myself in these types of conversations and threads because if I don't, who will? Be the change you wish to see, right? If I had kept my mouth shut and just allowed them to steamroll this person, what type of image would he have of Christianity? Would there be no nugget of hope regarding coming out to his parents?
And what of the people who could easily have offered their own "Likes" or commentary to mine? Instead of private messaging, they could have helped this young man feel something of the love of God. Instead, he was left with a very bitter taste in his mouth, spoon-fed by supposedly loving Christians.
Our duty is not to stand by and allow such ill-feelings to spread. Our duty as Christians is to love God by loving one another - not silently... not ashamedly... not timidly. We are called to live our love out loud.
If that means dancing in the fire, bring on the flames.
9 Year Old Combats WBC
I love stories like this.
I'm no fan of Westboro Baptist Church, and I honestly feel terrible for the cultish mentality that the children of that family are an unwitting part of.
However, this entry isn't about WBC so much as it is about a brave young man armed with a pencil, paper and love.
Upon seeing the demonstrators rallying with their anti-homosexual posters and signs, this young boy requested permission to write a sign of his own. Playing off their typical "God Hates ..." signs, little Josef simply wrote "God Hates No One."
Amen, little Josef! Amen!
We'd all do well to remember this.
No matter the lifestyle choices, no matter the faith preference, no matter the grievous list of sins we souls have committed, God still loves each of us and wants nothing more than to embrace us in His arms. Search out that love in yourself, as God is a part of you. Search out that love and extend it to everyone you meet.
This is a toughie for me. Still not exactly sure where I stand.
Keaton Fuller, a senior at a Catholic High school in Iowa, was awarded a $40,000 scholarship by the Eychaner Foundation. The award, named the Gold Matthew Shephard Scholarship, caused an uproar because of it's overtly homosexual basis. Originally, the bishop had refused to allow this award to be given publicly during commencement, fearing it would cause confusion and scandal among those present.
However, after speaking with the Eychaner Foundation, he reversed his decision with the caveat that the Superintendent read the script for presentation instead of a member of the foundation.
Here are the things I don't have a problem with:
The Eychaner Foundation has a Scholarship award that falls in line with its core mission to promote acceptance and tolerance of the LGBT community. Common sense.
Fuller, a student of a Catholic school, successfully applied for this award with the help of faculty members. Scholarships are open to anyone regardless of where they're from, and considering the basis for this scholarship isn't the promotion of something that goes against dogma, faculty members were not at fault for putting him at risk for supporting heresy. In fact, this scholarship aims to curb bullying and promote the love and acceptance of people who are homosexual - something that does fall in line with Church teaching.
The Eychaner Foundation desiring to publicly award this scholarship to Fuller at his commencement. Can't fault them for realizing the marketing victory this would be for them.
There being public pressure put onto the Bishop to reverse his decision. Free speech, after all, is still supposedly free in this country.
The Bishop agreeing to speak with the Eychaner Foundation to reach an amicable solution. This is, after all, how one responds with love, especially when his own flock is so up in arms about the issue. In all honesty, I believe (from the quotes) that he responded graciously, thoughtfully, and with charity.
Here are the things I DO have a problem with:
The Eychaner Foundation expecting to force its way into a private school's commencement ceremony. Asking politely and accepting a decline is normal behavior. Getting pushy and demanding you gain entrance as a SPEAKER is ludicrous.
The Bishop reversing his decision. I got several scholarships / awards upon graduation. Plenty of other students did, too. No one ever came to speak about these things considering they're private awards. We had our various scholarships listed in the program, I think, but there wasn't any singling out of students because the commencement was for ALL of us. Unless you were the valedictorian (or saludictorian), there was no real singling out for random awards. It'd've taken forever.
I'm all for this young man being recognized for his achievements. I really am. I have no issue with how he got the scholarship, what the scholarship represents, or even the faculty responsible for helping him apply. That's all well and good.
I am a little iffy on having that recognition overshadow the entire commencement ceremony due to all the protests, pressure and talks. I mean, are any of the other students having speakers for their scholarships? Would anyone have even cared if two or three of these speakers were turned away? Doubtful. The only reason this issue became an issue is because of the push by the homosexual agenda to be accepted everywhere and anywhere.
Once again, this isn't an issue of homosexuality. It's an issue of common sense. Most speakers for high school graduations consist of faculty, students and a particular person who is brought in to reflect on success and opportunity for ALL those graduating. This person was brought in to highlight the achievements of a homosexual student for academics and his work in promoting peace and tolerance for homosexuals. While that's a noble thing for sure, why must we have a commencement speaker highlight this as opposed to the student who raised funds to help a no-kill shelter survive? A student who raised awareness for those with Down-Syndrome? A student who stood outside her local Planned Parenthood every Saturday afternoon, rain or shine, to wage a silent war with her rosary in hand?
In my mind, this is a ploy to once again push the homosexual agenda onto Catholic schools in a very publicized, marketable way. Fuller is a perfect poster-child for something like this, and I can't help but wonder if that isn't at least part of the reason he was chosen. Maybe it's all those years of public relations courses that has jaded me, but I can't help but think if I were in their shoes, I'd've chosen him as well. He'd provide the perfect excuse to gain entry to a plethora of conflict that could very well kick the dust up at the Catholic Church.
I really hope they make the full script available as I'm curious to know what, exactly, the bishop signed off on.
Two young women from a Catholic High School were barred entrance from their prom because they arrived as a homosexual couple. They could have easily shown up with two male friends and bypassed this entire controversy, but no... they wanted to make a statement. Apparently that statement went a little something like this:
We go to a Catholic school that expressly teaches that homosexual unions are not in line with Catholic teachings. We know this. We understand this. However, we want to whine and complain anyway when said school (which is only following the dictates of its well documented, 2000+ year faith) refuses to be a party to us going directly against the same Catholic teaching that we've paid to learn.
Entitlement and a complete lack of common sense. But people will eat it right up because no one sees logic - they're too busy fawning over the "civil rights issue" when in reality - there ISN'T one. It's as basic as "The invitation says black tie. Don't show up in jeans and a T-shirt."
I don't believe that the end of the world is going to be this crazy Armageddon of fire balls, alien invasions or even zombies (jury's still out on sentient robot armies - ha).
Nope. I believe it's going to be something much more innocuous, and I also believe we're seeing the creepings of it in the push for politics like this.
Being a Catholic, I believe that there will be a time in which Christ comes back to judge the living and the dead. It's right there in our Creed. It's right there in our Bible. Jesus promised to return in glory at the end of the ages in order to usher in an era of peace in which He reigns as King.
However, He won't be back until the Church is thoroughly decimated by a necessary cleansing (and I do mean decimated - read the definition here). Oddly enough, we seem to be entering into the beginnings of some sudsy action right now!
Times are not only changing... they're coming to a head. For as much of a crazy woman as this will make me sound, I am convinced we are living on the cusp of these "end times."
We've seen a complete betrayal of faith (both in the Catholic community and elsewhere). Religion has become something to be ashamed of. The name of Christ is only uttered by those too "unenlightened" to know any better. Morality has been skewed so beyond recognition that we accept the murder of innocence as "choice." We've already begun our trip down the proverbial "slippery slope" and evil is already working at desensitizing us to its perversion.
There are those within our own ranks that are calling for the abolition of firmly held dogma. These wolves in sheep's clothing are, in my opinion, the work of evil attempting to tear us down from within . It will be from them that the trumpets of Armageddon will sound, and yes... I have no doubt that even the chair of St. Peter will be corrupted. One day in the not-too-distant future (yes, maybe even in my lifetime), a pope will be "elected" who will make it his nefarious goal to destroy the Church.
I pray for Pope Benedict, because I wonder where we'll be after his pontificate ends. Will we luck out with another strong and brave leader that is willing to stand in staunch defense of our faith? I fear not, and I fear the day that the teachings of our previous popes go ignored. I honestly dread the day in which homosexual marriages are taught as a natural right of equality... when abortion is accepted as a social justice... when women are "ordained" as Catholic priests. All done, of course, under the guise of "charitable acceptance."
I have no doubt that these things are to come, and as they do, those true Catholics who can still discern the work of satan will be persecuted beyond endurance. We'll understand that the sacraments are being slowly siphoned away from us (after all, women priests are not priests at all, thus consecration providing us with the Eucharist is impossible... confession... confirmation... all our greatest avenues of grace will be denied!).
I've been saying for the last two years that our beloved Church is headed for a schism. With all the dissent, misinformation, and bad catechesis running rampant within our ranks, the only true way we'll purify ourselves is through an ugly split. Folks who don't truly understand / believe what the Catholic Church has taught for the past 2,000 plus years can move on and create yet another protestant denomination that thinks they've got it all figured out.
The remnant Church (fragmented though she may be) will have successfully been purged of all those who are seeking her destruction. Then, and only then, can we expect Christ. No one knows the day or hour, but we can be assured that our Church must endure the aforementioned chastisement for allowing the follies of her members to spread with such alarming apathy.
It is only through this chastisement that we can really prepare ourselves for the Second Coming.
I realize all of this makes me sound like a crazy person... maybe even as crazy as Harold Camping's rapture predictions.
However, I'm not suggesting anything outside the Bible. I'm simply following our current path to its logical end. More and more we can see religions being persecuted (specifically Christians), and more and more of our own religious are turning away from dogma (Fr. Z just compiled a great list of the sisters that served as catalyst for the Vatican "crackdown").
This is not a matter of the Church "finally changing with the times." Dogma CANNOT "change." It's what makes our faith so steadfast, reliable and holy. When folks start tinkering with the divine, there will be consequences... and we're feeling those consequences with a lack of vocations, a lack of reverence, and a lack of dignity in the public sphere.
May God have mercy on us.
Some Links for You!
Just a quick tally of a few links I found particularly interesting / edifying today. Hope you enjoy! :)
Canonical info regarding Father Guarnizo and Barbara Johnson by Edward Peters, an actual Canonical lawyer.
***NEW*** Here's an awesome response from Phil Lawler to the horrible letter written to appease Johnson from the Archdiocese. Spot on. Evil has permeated our ranks. May God save us.
A great "advice" letter written by Supertradmum that was originally meant for seminarians, but can really be utilized by anyone looking to advance in holiness and charity.
A super nerdy look into the size and scope of the universe both big and small, and how we fit into it. Our God is an incredible God!
Incredible music / art video with extraordinarily powerful lyrics that young women everywhere need to hear.
Here's the video so you don't even have to go clicking anywhere! :)
Judas, too, was ordained a priest.
So the entry from yesterday was a lot more venomous than I had originally meant for it to turn out. I guess I was still a lot more angry and disgusted than I thought.
Anyway, a comment on one of the articles gave me pause. The woman wrote, "Jesus gave Communion to Judas, even knowing that he had betrayed Him, didn't He?"
He did! And He most certainly knew that Judas had already betrayed Him. In fact, as I mentioned before, Louisa Piccarretta described this scene in The 24 Hours of the Passion. As Jesus knelt before Judas to clean his feet, His Heart was torn in agony as He foresaw the end Judas would meet because of his stubborn refusal to ask forgiveness. In Judas, Christ saw all priests who would fall away from their callings. Yet still, He persisted in His blessings, He persisted in allowing Judas to partake of the Eucharist.
Soon after reading this comment, I came across one of Maria Valtorta's visions in which Jesus appears to 500 followers after His Resurrection. Sts. Peter and John are present, and Jesus teaches them the importance of obedience and perseverance. He says to them:
"And remember also that I did not refuse Myself even to Judas of Kerioth… A priest must try to save, by all possible means. And let love always prevail, among the means used to save. Consider that I was not unaware of Judas' horror… But, overcoming all disgust, I treated the wretch as I treated John [the Beloved Disciple]... One must work even then… always… until everything is accomplished."
Honestly, I have no idea how I came across that particular passage save for Divine Providence. In my own arrogance, I had also disregarded Church teaching by reacting with such anger towards Johnson. I think Christ wanted to remind me that I needed a bit more humility and a lot more charity if I wanted to fancy myself a follower of His.
Well played, Good Sir, well played.
So while I'm still disgusted by Barbara Johnson's actions (those actions being her willful attempt to commit a sacrilege and her subsequent lambasting of Father Guarnizo), I no longer wish that she and her hoard of supporters drop off the Catholic radar. Instead of praying for an early bout of Spring Cleaning that sees them all ostracized or relegated to protestant denominations, I should be praying that the Holy Spirit alights in their hearts so that they can see the error of their ways and return to the faithful, Catholic fold.
After all, in the same vision, Jesus stated to the crowd:
And those that for any reason should separate from the Mother Church, would be members cut off, no longer nourished with the mystic blood that is Grace coming from Me, the divine Head of the Church. Like prodigal sons, separated through their own will from the paternal house, in their short-lived wealth and constant and graver and graver misery, they would be blunting their spiritual intellects by means of too heavy foods and wines, and then they would languish eating the bitter acorns of unclean animals until they returned to the paternal house, saying with contrite hearts: "We have sinned. Father, forgive us and open the doors of your abode to us". Then, whether it is a member of a separated Church, or an entire Church - oh! if it were so, but where, when will so many imitators of Me arise, capable of redeeming these entire separated Churches, at the cost of their lives, to make, to remake only one Fold under only one shepherd, as I ardently wish? - then whether it is only one person or an assembly that comes back, open the doors to them.
And may they all feel the Light of the Spirit. May their minds be opened to His Wisdom, and may their egos be enveloped by His Glory. May mine, too.
However, let not this testimony give anyone the opinion that I will no longer strike out against such folly in the future. I still stand behind my opinion that this woman should be barred from the Eucharist until she reconciles herself to the Church through means of a true confession. I still stand behind my opinion that the priest did exactly what he should have done in preventing the sacrilege to occur. I also stand by my opinion that the superiors who shot out an apology should be ashamed of throwing their brother under the bus when he was only acting in the way our Church teaches he must (in protecting the Eucharist from sacrilege and by refusing to allow the public to be led astray by erroneous pastoral example).
May this brave and blessed priest ever feel the smile of Our Lady upon him, and may his superiors learn the error of their ways, seek forgiveness, and move forward with greater faith and solidarity.
So the last couple days have been a flurry of media activity regarding Barbara Johnson and her incredibly presumptuous attempt to partake of the Eucharist at her mother's funeral.
Unsurprisingly, almost every single news outlet paints Father Guarnizo as a heartless bigot who sniffed a gay and decided to make a political statement.
This woman then went on to whine about how she and her neice couldn't both eulogize her mother and how mean Father Guarnizo was by leaving the Church before she could finish waxing philosophical for her audience.
Pathetic - on so many, many levels - pathetic.
1 - You had just met this priest (for the FIRST TIME according to all accounts), and introduced him to your "partner." In two private accounts, supposed witnesses claim you used the word "lover." Considering you're self-proclaimed "Catholic upbringing" you know full-well living in an active homosexual relationship is a mortal sin. Don't be surprised when he bars you from Communion.
2 - The fact that you'd just met this man for the first time surprises me in and of itself. For being such a "devout" Catholic, how exactly did the funeral get put together without seeing him at least once? Sure, mom could've put arrangements together before her death, and sure, the funeral home may have gotten in touch with Fr. Guarnizo in order to ensure he was scheduled for the Mass, but really? You didn't attempt to meet with him beforehand to go over things like readings, share memories of your mother (for homily purposes) or express your desire for more than one eulogy (since eulogies aren't even a part of Catholic Funeral Masses except in cases where the pastor feels generous enough to allow one)?
3 - You attempt playing the martyr who really loves the Church but was just cruelly treated by one of her members in stating "I have gotten email upon email saying, ‘I’m not going back,’ and I say, ‘Please go back, because that man does not represent the Catholic Church.’"
Let me go ahead and stop you right there. This priest is more representative of the Catholic Church than you will ever be. He is not only representative of the Church, he is a hand-selected representative of Christ! He upholds the dogma of our Church and does not attempt bending the rules to suit his lifestyle choices, opinions or feelings. You'd do well to follow HIS example and not that of your own selfish, arrogant and misguided brain.
I wouldn't be nearly as angry with this if she was a non-Catholic. Non-Catholics wouldn't know any better and may very well assume that being in the Eucharistic line is just "what you do."
This woman KNOWS better but arrogantly defies Church teaching because she simply doesn't believe that her lifestyle is mortally sinful.
Fine - don't believe it. No one is forcing you to. But no one is forcing you to be in the Communion line, either. Find a church that opens its doors to perversions, untruths and errors. Don't expect the Church to bend Her teachings to give you warm fuzzies just because you don't agree with Her 2,000 + year old dogma.
THAT is what drives me up a wall. And the fact that this wonderful priest is now being thrown under the bus by his own superiors (because God forbid we hurt the feelings of the homosexual population!) also drives me up a wall. This is NOT a pastorally insensitive thing to do. Nor is it misguided. His duty is to protect the sanctity of the Eucharist and that's exactly what he did. God forbid he gave her the Eucharist (which would be a sacrilege according to our faith). That would be three-fold sin. First, the woman would commit an even graver sin by sullying the Sacrament. Next, the priest would commit the grave sin of comission by being a party to this sacrilege. Worst of all, the priest would then be sinning by leading those who saw this exchange into moral confusion (because they might think this sacrilege to be perfectly acceptable).
Oh, for shame that folks don't realize that the priest protected not only this woman, but himself and all present at the expense of his own person. Shameful, shameful, shameful!
Instead, this ungracious woman lashes out at him to anyone who will listen. Why? Because her over-inflated ego was bruised. Better her ego than her soul and the souls of those would have witnessed it.
Honestly, I hope that anyone who stands in solidarity with her DOES stop considering themselves Catholic. These types of folks do more harm than the atheists or agnostics who rally against us openly. These "Cafeteria Catholics" are the WORST because they spread fallacy and scandal from the inside.
Our beloved Church is heading for a schism. The more that superiors bend to trash like this, the more we hurt ourselves. Pretty soon, there's going to be a reckoning in which true Catholics stand up and say "NO MORE." We need to clean house and rid ourselves of these cancerous members (laity and clergy included). I wish such a step weren't necessary, but there is no doubt in my mind that this will come to a head within 10-15 years.
We also need to do a better job teaching our members the TRUTH of our faith and punishing those who wish to bend that truth to fit their own warped agendas.
That Snowball Keeps on Rolling...
Religious Freedoms are in the Lions' Den right about now...
Gay marriage - this is one of those topics that John and I strongly differ on. There was a time in which I saw no reason for anyone to say "No, homosexuals, you can't get married." However, in coming to terms with what that actually spells out for religious freedom - I have a huge bone of contention now with "Gay marriage."
Upon solidifying my stance that homosexual marriage is morally wrong, I came to the concession that homosexuals could "marry" all they want so long as those who understood homosexual marriage to be morally deficient wouldn't be forced to be a party to it.
Well, apparently that's not good enough for folks in power as they're attempting to yet again stifle religious freedoms in the sake of "equality."
Can I go ahead and wave the BS flag wildly?
Much like in Australia, Washington State (in the US) just signed off on a marriage bill that would require Churches (or Synagogues, or Mosques, etc) to offer their buildings / services to homosexuals or face fines for being discriminatory.
Um, excuse me? I can be fined because I practice my religious beliefs in not participating in the sham of homosexual marriage? And that's EQUALITY?
Again - I don't care if homosexuals want to get married in churches that welcome their belief systems. I don't care if they want to get married in the middle of a McDonald's, jumping out of a plane, or in the middle of a park at dusk. More power to them. They're not infringing on my rights, and they're not forcing me to be a party to what I consider to be not only a farce, but a morally degrading and socially crippling sin.
So again - this has NOTHING to do with homosexuals getting "married." It has EVERYTHING to do with having my rights ignored and my very faith threatened. This is a religious rights issue, not an equality issue.
The government is attempting to force me, through threat of financial punishment, to open my doors / services to homosexuals. If the homosexual lobby wants to get even more asnine than they currently are, they could easily stir up bogus claims against a few churches in any given area, successfully crippling them due to fines / fees / etc.
That would effectively shut down still more Churches / Synagogues, etc. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see how dangerous this move is.
Once again - homosexuals can get married all they want under law. I don't really care. What I DO care about is seeing any religious institution being forced to go against their beliefs just so these homosexuals can feel vindicated in their chosen lifestyle.
But yeah - let's keep sticking with the tired "We demand equality" shtick. Let's keep ignoring the fact that this has absolutely nothing to do with equality so much as 1st Amendment freedoms.
Again - for shame...
Cuomo - You're NOT Catholic!
Let's take care of some business that apparently needs to be repeated... again... for the thousandth time...
Gov. Andrew Cuomo, you are NOT a Catholic. Please, for the love of all that's sane and good in the world, STOP PARADING YOURSELF AROUND AS IF YOU ACTUALLY UNDERSTOOD WHAT BEING CATHOLIC MEANS.
You are about as far removed from Catholicism as it gets. In fact, you're actively working AGAINST the Church and pretending it's all for the sake of equality. Your stances on (and continued work for) such things as abortion and gay marriage effectively excommunicated you.
Congrats! What you did (and continue to do) was (and is!) so OUT-OF-LINE with the Church that you didn't even NEED your bishop to sign off on your excommunication! The anti-Catholic acts which you CONTINUE to be a party to were cause enough to cut you off from the Church. And since a "Catholic" like you probably has no idea how excommunication works, go look up Excommunication Latae Sententiae. That oughta clear it up for you.
In fact, Cardinal Burke (who heads the highest court of the Vatican, BTW) hit home this point about Cuomo when he said,
So Gov. Cuomo, if you still had ANY confusion in that already mangled mind of yours, allow me to set you straight - you're not Catholic. I don't care that you're not Catholic. What I DO care about is your consistent proclamation that you ARE Catholic. Do you have any idea how confusing that is to folks? Let me explain it this way...
You frequent one of the nicest country clubs in the nation. You know their dress code, you've abided by their dress code for a good ten years or so. Then one day, you decide to walk in wearing cut-offs, flip flops and a t-shirt. At first, folks are pretty taken aback when they see you. The waitress probably pulled you aside and explained the dress code. One or two of the patrons probably tried doing the same. But you kept coming back, week after week, insisting that cut-offs, flip flops and Tees were perfectly normal attire.
Those not part of the county club see you walk into the club and assume that's normal attire. Even some IN the club - who KNOW better - begin to question the rules since you refuse to listen to the staff and continue to trample on their requests for you to adhere to the code. See how things begin to get murky?
So if you wanna believe in abortion and gay marriage and even aliens from Jupiter, go right ahead. Just don't call yourself a Catholic, because you're NOT and you bring shame to our name. You are a disgrace, and I want your name NO WHERE NEAR my faith. Until you come to terms with the fact that YOU don't get to write the rules of Catholicism, I don't want to hear the word "Catholic" fall from your lips again.
Dang it - this is why I'm so anti-Cafeteria Catholics. They do more to destroy our faith than the atheists do!
So what brought all this on? On Wednesday, Gay City News reported a journalist asked Cuomo what he thought of the arguments against gay marriage that were presented to him. His response?
“There is no answer from the opposition. There really isn’t. Ultimately, it’s, ‘I want to discriminate.’ And that’s anti-New York. It’s anti-American.”
So glad the repeated letters from several bishops, the citizen protests, the fact that almost all the other states refuse to participate in this farce, and the mountain of letters Cuomo and the NY representatives got leading up to this were "no answer." I see... good to know that we're all "anti-American" for voicing our opinions. Good to know that this "anti-American" outpouring of vocalization in favor of the views held by the majority of voting citizens has labeled us so negatively by the Governor of NY. Deplorable.
May God grant me patience. I simply have no more for this man. He needs prayers, specifically to the Holy Spirit. May he have his eyes opened up to the Truth. If he cannot reconcile his ideas with the Church, then may he at least understand his harm in continuing to call himself Catholic (especially one that partakes of the Eucharist).
In the meantime, let's pray for his Bishop and parish priests... may they have the brass to handle him accordingly with patience, charity and, if necessary, tough love.
So I just wrote up an entry and my computer died. In the entry, I posted a message I got from a "friend" who was upset with how I was handling the issues of homosexuality. Considering the atrocious spelling, punctuation and lack of coherency, God was probably being kind by deleting my work. I took it as a sign that I shouldn't post the actual message out of compassion for the author.
Anyway, for those of you who have found me through Blogger, WDTPRS or even Google, you haven't gotten to see the fantastic threads these entries have spawned on Facebook (which my blog is connected to). Unsurprisingly, the homosexuality entries (and, oddly enough, ones on female ordination) have gotten quite a bit of traffic. As a result, I've had friends call me out on being all sorts of fun things. I've been accused of being hateful, malicious, bigoted, upset over being "dumped" by a homosexual, angry, and even racist (I seriously have no idea how that one came up).
This last e-mail, however, was SO ridiculous that I really wanted to share it. For charity's sake, however, I'll simply give you the gist. I do this not only to publicly defend myself, but also to call out the foolishness of the person who obviously hasn't read (or at least understood) any of my posts. I also do this so that others who are facing the same type of foolishness feel as though they're not alone in staring down this tornado of folly.
1. I do not hate homosexuals. On the contrary, I have plenty of family and friends who are homosexual, and I love them very much.
2. I do not teach that homosexuality is wrong. Folks constantly try to lump homosexuality and homosexual sex together. They are NOT the same thing. Homosexuality is not sinful. The act of homosexual sex is sinful. Those are two different things.
3. I do not teach that homosexuals go to hell. In fact, I don't think I've stated anything even remotely close to that. Stop being silly.
4. I am not upset or angry that I was "dumped" by a homosexual. First of all, we didn't "dump" each other. Secondly, I was pretty darn happy to be out of that relationship as it was unhealthy for both of us. Thirdly, I met and fell in love with my wonderful husband within a couple months of breaking it off. Can't exactly say I'm disappointed with the end of that relationship, especially when I made out like a bandit with my husband. :)
5. I have never made malicious statements about the homosexual community. They, too, are decent, wonderful, loving people deserving of respect and dignity. Much like any other "group" of people (be it religious, political, economic, cultural, etc) they are human beings at their core... made in the image of God.
6. I've never said that homosexuals cannot be priests. Seriously - where did that even come up? Considering the priesthood is meant to be celibate, it doesn't matter to me WHAT sexuality you are so long as you follow the vows of your ordination and live your life in as Christlike a way as possible.
7. I've also never said homosexuals can't recieve Communion. I've said that ANYONE in the state of mortal sin cannot partake of the Eucharist. If homosexuals are abstaining from homosexual sex, they're not in the state of mortal sin. They are more than able to participate in accepting the Body of Christ into themselves. Again, please actually read what I write instead of drumming up crazy accusations in your mind.
8. Explain how I am either a bigot or a racist. I'm really curious (and have no doubt I'll be highly entertained) to hear your reasons for these statements.
9. I am not "judging" folks in my posts. I'm explaining the Church's stance (and hence, my stance) on these issues because there is so much confusion among Catholics. There was plenty of confusion on my part, too, until I started to teach myself what the true positions were. You might be a little less willing to rile yourself up if you understood this yourself.
It is incredible to me how much ire is being tossed up, but it's not due to the posts... it's due to the misunderstandings (or flat out ignorance) of those who "read" the posts and then shoot angry laser beams my way without actually processing the posts. Ah well. This just let's me know I'm doing something right. Ha ha.
You get a double post today courtesy of my irritation regarding this petition which a friend just made me aware of.
Change.org is attempting to drum up pressure to have Sesame Street writers craft a storyline which finds Bert and Ernie married, or to introduce a transgendered character.
LEAVE. SEXUALITY. OUT. OF. CHILDREN'S. PROGRAMMING.
This is NOT a conversation for Sesame Street to initiate. This is between parents and children when they are age-appropriate. Three and five year olds do NOT need this type of foolishness detracting from their ABCs. You've GOT to be kidding me... *grumble, grumble, grumble*
It is not the place of Sesame Street to introduce children to homosexuality, transgenderism, or any other sordid aspect of sexuality. Stop attempting to manipulate children at their most innocent levels! How absolutely shameful.
The petition's Facebook page holds this movement up as a way to "end the bullying and suicides of LGBT youth." Pardon me while I shake my head at such obvious stupidity. We've already got TONS of homosexual characters portrayed in the media. Guess what? We've still got plenty of suicides, self-hatred and bigotry. Why? Because we keep hoping that pouring salve on the symptoms will alleviate the actual problem. It won't.
And starting to introduce these concepts to children (CHILDREN!) in an effort to validate yourselves in the minds of the general population won't make you any keener on accepting yourselves for who you are.
This boils my blood. It reminds me of one of the Vagina Monologues (argh... I hate to even bring those horrid excuses for literature up). It is one of the first, if not THE first, monologue in the series. It is titled Because He Liked to Look at It. The female speaker hates her vagina and is embarrassed by the existence of it. Her entire life she hated herself for this anatomical reality. One day, she found a lover who did all but worship her vagina. Only in his acceptance could she then love her vagina.
What a HORRIBLE message to women. You can only love your vagina because it gives pleasure to a man.
The same sort of message is being expected by the homosexual community that is rallying behind this petition. "Only through YOUR acceptance can we ever grow to love who we are!"
You can attempt turning every character in the media into an Ellen, Blaine or Dorian Gray. The fact remains that suicides among the homosexual community will remain high until they accept themselves as who they are. They will NEVER find acceptance and love from the outside world until they first find it among themselves, FOR themselves. The same holds true for ALL people, regardless of race, religion, gender or political background. You MUST learn to love and accept yourself before you can expect anyone else to.
I hold Ellen up as the perfect example of this. She has not only accepted herself, she has become a force to be reckoned with, and I bless her for it. She is not afraid to put herself out there and love herself for who she is. As a result, people gravitate towards her. She is charismatic, loving, witty, and intelligent. She has become what ALL homosexuals can become if only they'd fight their own demons and accept themselves for who they are.
But sure as hell don't attempt dragging children into your inner-struggles. Children aren't meant to be dealing with these types of issues so early, and it is NOT the place of public programming to initiate conversations meant for parents.
Sorry - I'm typically more coherent when I write out these things, but this particular topic has officially boiled my blood. Absolutely ridiculous.
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