Tuesday, June 20, 2017

New Hampshire becomes to 11th diocese to confirm children before First Communion

Manchester, New Hampshire Bishop Peter Libasci has decided to administer the Sacrament of Confirmation to children before receiving their First Communion, according to a syndicated National Catholic Register article. This is the 11th Latin rite diocese worldwide to initiate such change, with most recently the Archdiocese of Denver to do so in the United States. 

Lay proponents of this reshuffling believe this is theologically-correct, and the order of the Sacraments of Initiation are Baptism, Confirmation, and Holy Eucharist in that order. They are if you're an adult convert, since anyone over the age of reason (7) must go through this order, even if they're a teenager. An adult must consent to his baptism, a prerequisite for all the other Sacraments. 

In the Eastern Church the priest confirms immediately after infant baptism, and there is not much of a big deal with First Communion that I'm aware of. In the Western Tradition you are not Confirmed until much older and are fully responsible for your own salvation. Traditionally the minimum age is 12 (when my mother was confirmed), but most often it's more like 14 or 15 when teens are confirmed. Seven-year-olds may be confirmed at the danger of death provided they've received their First Communion. 

Since most adult converts are Baptized at the Easter Vigil, they are also confirmed thereafter (often by the parish priest with faculties from the Bishop), and receive their First Holy Communion at the First Mass of Easter. However, adults may be baptized anytime as long as they're catechized (and/or also at the danger of death), which automatically makes them eligible to receive Holy Communion provided they're in the state of grace. They'll get confirmed later on. 

Originally children didn't receive their First Communion until 9 or 10 years old. Pope St. Pius X changed this to 7 in his 1910 Papal Bull Quam Singulari, in reaction to Little Nellie receiving 5 of the 7 Sacraments before dying at age five just a few years beforehand. 

Today, unfortunately, Confirmation has become a laughing stock Sacrament, in the sense that parents, grandparents, and godparents have to force their youngsters into taking the classes. The use of red and white graduation robes (which aren't in the rubrics) has indeed turned Confirmation into a graduation ceremony from CCD. (Additionally, in the Novus Ordo, the sacrament might be doubtful because of the oil used.) There are some who complentate whether or not to raise the Confirmation age to 18 when the persons are legal adults. Either way, I don't think confirming 7 year-olds who don't have full faculties is a good idea. 

Friday, June 16, 2017

Catholic school teachers have no business being unionized

The schoolteachers of the Diocese of Worcester who teach at the Central, chancery-run schools (Holy Name H.S., St. Bernard's H.S. in Fitchburg, St. Peter's Elementary School, and St. Peter-Marian) are part of a union called the Diocesan Educators Lay Teachers Association (DELTA). Yesterday, they walked the picket lines with their pupils after authorizing a strike vote while negotiating a new contract. (Pictures of the picketing appeared in today's Local section of the Telegram & Gazette; the article states the salary ranges are from $33,990 to $61,660.)

The Diocese has responded on their website, which can be accessed here. Apparently the teachers have a generous health insurance plan (85% paid by the Diocese), free tuition for teachers' kids after one year of service, and a 401k matching retirement plan. 

First of all, one of the last major decrees issued by Benedict XVI before the bogeyman forced him out was a salary cap on lay employees. Lay employees should not make more in a salary than double that of a diocesan priest's salary. (Last to my knowledge, Worcester priests made $25,000, so lay employees shouldn't make more than $50,000.) Since these schools are operated by the Diocese, the teachers are church employees. 

Secondly, raises haven't been given in a while because Catholic school enrollments are down, not because only because good Catholic families can't afford it, but because they don't teach from the Baltimore Catechism. Neither the TLM has been said in 50+ years for school liturgies. With orthodoxy in question, you're going to lose customers. 

Finally, church employees work for the Church. They have no business being unionized. Quadragesimo Anno only applies to private secular industry, not Church lay employees. 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

"Millionaire Tax" to appear on Mass. 2018 ballot

The Massachusetts Legislature approved yesterday the "Millionaire Tax" constitutional amendment for the ballot in 2018. Likely to be Question 1, below are a couple of slides (the text and a chart of what actually could happen):




If you read the text carefully, the proposal is worse than thought. The second to last sentence says that the surtax bracket is to "be adjusted annually." This will destroy the Commonwealth. 

There were 15,422 real millionaire taxpayers in Massachusetts in 2014. If this tax passes, most of them at the lower end ($1.1, 1.2, etc.) will pack-up and move to more tax-friendly states, like:

  • New Hampshire (No ordinary income or sales tax, 5% on interest and dividends)
  • Rhode Island (Highest rate 5.99%)
  • Pennsylvania (3.99% flat tax)
  • Michigan (4.25& flat tax)
  • Illinois (3.75% state flat tax)
  • Indiana (3.23& flat tax)
  • Utah (5% flat tax)
  • Colorado (4.63% flat tax)
  • Tennessee (Same as New Hampshire)
  • Florida (No income tax)
  • Texas (No state income tax)
  • Nevada (No income tax)
  • Wyoming (No income tax)
  • South Dakota (No income tax)
  • Washington state (No income tax)
  • Alaska (No income tax)
  • (Source: Tax Foundation)

The list goes on and on, but the individual rate in Mass. is currently 5.1%, with the exception of some capital gains 12%. The corporate rate is 8%. If this ballot initiative passes, the rates will jack-up 4% to 9.1% for individuals, 12% for business (if applied), and 16% of those certain capital gains (if applied).

Say for example, according to the chart, all the actual millionaires and their businesses leave Massachusetts (which will be no surprise). The surtax bracket will be required to be adjusted to make sure the top 15,000 tax filers pay the extra 4%, so potentially $100,000 earners could be classified as "millionaires" for purposes of this amendment! 

This amendment must be defeated. If it does indeed pass (which unfortunately is very likely), it's permanent. This is a Constitutional Amendment to the state constitution and not a regular ballot question for a law, which will very hard to undo. 

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Who cares if the Article V Convention is a "runaway convention!"

On this Flag Day, I confess that I support Article V Convention of States, and could care less if it's a "runaway convention!" For those who are unfamiliar, Article V of the U.S. Constitution reads: 

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths thereof, as one or the other Mode of Ratification may proposed by the Congress; Provided no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article, and that no State, without consent of Congress, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate. 

So there are two constitutional ways amendments can be proposed: the Congressional method, which is how the first 27 amendments became part of the Constitution. The other method, which has never been done, is where 2/3rds (34) of the states pass resolutions agreeing to participate in an Amendments Convention, where each state sends a delegate. Any proposed amendments would have to be ratified by 3/4ths (38) of the states, just like the Congressional method. (As of this post 12 states have passed Article V.)

The Left obviously opposes the Constitutional Government, so they could care less about Article V. Some conservative groups, such as Concerned Women of America, the John Birch Society (which some SSPX priests are members of), and Eagle Forum (which has gone unhinged since Phyllis Schlafly passed away last year) over the fear of the "Runaway Convention." The Convention of States Project, who is behind the legislative process in the states, believes it's impossible since if all 34 resolutions include the same certain topics, the Convention must deal with the topics approved by the states and nothing else? 

The topics focused on by the Convention of States Project are Limited Federal Power, term limits, and fiscal discipline. These topics need to be discussed, no doubt. But I am disappointed that other topics on restoring our moral values will likely won't be discussed, so I could care less if Article V is a runaway convention! If 38 states must ratify proposals anyhow, the Convention wouldn't hurt. 

What about American essentials being Constitutionalized, such as the Pledge of Allegiance, the National Anthem, the Flag, English as the official language, etc.? With no language currently in the Constitution about these, a future Supreme Court could put them at-risk (and ruin America permanently). 

What about amendments overturning Roe v. Wade and defining civil marriage as heterosexual? What about banning men from using the ladies room? With the current makeup of Congress the marriage amendment would've passed 15-20 years ago but not today! Even if the GOP ends up with 67 Senators in 2018 they still won't passes these amendments because of John McCain's girlfriend Lindsey Graham, who would vote against it. 

I know Mark Levin proposed in his Liberty Amendments an amendment that would allow state legislatures to propose amendments to the Constitution. Is there the social issue amendments are to be proposed? 

Technically, any amendment proposal is allowed except two U.S. Senators from each state. They could propose abolishing everything, which won't fly. 

Also, Article V itself doesn't specify that only certain topics must be discussed. It's quite possible that pro-life groups could challenge the constitutionality of limiting certain topics, where the Supreme Court would have immediate jurisdiction. (See. Article III, Sec.2, Cl. 2)

Article V is the only peaceful way the United States of America is going to be saved. Otherwise, be prepared for another Civil War. 

Monday, June 5, 2017

Bernie's people now in charge of Mass. D-party; Mass. Bishops support abortion rights

Massachusetts Democrats have moved on from their electoral loss last fall by embracing Bernie Sanders' platform for the 2018 state election. At the DCU Center in Worcester on Saturday, 3300 Democrats attended the State Convention (the most ever for an odd-numbered year), and the speakers ripped President Trump and RINO Gov. Charlie Baker and approved a Soviet-style platform at the state level going forward (my commentary in red):

  • $15/hour minimum wage ($15 just to flip a hamburger? I don't think so, since Mass. just had a min. wage increase to $11/hour this past January. If this passes, more high school kids looking for summer jobs will be out of work. This hurts working families who actually need their kids to work on summer vacations.
  • Free UMass and state colleges to all residents (See my note below)
  • A single-payer MassHealth system for all (MassHealth is currently 40% of the state budget and was originally for those in poverty, now mostly illegals are on it. This mimics Bernie's Medicare for All, which wouldn've worked. When the state that Bernie represents in the Senate, Vermont, passed Green Mountain Care for 600,000 people, it was scrapped because it would have doubled taxes. There is simply no way it would work for the 7,000,000 people in Massachusetts.
  • Carbon emissions reductions 
  • Demilitarizing the police (The reason why the state and some local police are militarized because of 9/11 et. al. If people actually behaved maybe the cops wouldn't have to ride in tanks and wear riot gear.

These nullifiers are no joke. They are ready to run primary challengers against more moderate Democrats in the Legislature who would not vote for such things and those who voted against the Bathroom Bill and the obscene pay raise. 

What would end the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is the voter approval of the Millionaire Tax to the state constitution, which would levy a 4% surcharge for millionaires to be earmarked for education and transportation. The organizers backing the question think they're going to raise $2 billion in extra revenue for these two purposes, but I don't think it will work. Once passed, millionaires at the low-end will just pack-up and leave for states with lower or no income taxes. This is a gimmick posed by the teachers' union thinking that the extra money will go to the schools, which is no guarantee! (The way Beacon Hill works, and in theory, a tax can be used for any purpose.) 

Free UMass is another gimmick that will not be served by the passage of the Millionaire Tax. Since illegals (who have no business being present in the country) are already receiving in-state tuition, there is no way tuition free UMass or state college for lawful residents will work. According to Maddie Kilgannon's Get Smart column in the April 5, 2017 edition of The Boston Globe ("Tuition hikes. Oh, my!"), UMass Amherst tuition this upcoming academic year will be $15,345 in-state (a 2.5% increase) and $33,492 out of state (a 0.9% increase). Based on calculations, room and board should be $12,253. 

Free college, like free K-12, could lead to legally mandatory college. Think about it.

Finally, everyone knows the Massachusetts Catholic Bishops are a joke because they don't act like and govern as bishops. Now they are ok with abortion rights, and in particular, taxpayer funded abortions. Since there is an effort to amend the state constitution to ban taxpayer funding of abortion and signatures were being collected, the Bishops banned collecting signatures for political purposes on June 1st on church property for this reason:
Church functions are a place to experience the fullness of community and parish life. In particular, Holy Mass is a place to encounter God through the reception of the Eucharist. The celebration of Holy Mass is a place for prayer, reflection, Reconciliation and hope.
Yeah right. Holy Mass is not said validly in 99% of the parishes, so don't give us lectures on the sacraments when your excellencies don't even dispense them yourselves! Then again, most Catholic clergy are, unfortunately, Democrats, despite the platform going against God and country. 

Friday, June 2, 2017

New "Order of Celebrating Matrimony" is perverted

June is the month of the brides, or at least it used to be. 

For Catholics who bother to marry in the mainstream church these days, your new "Order of Celebrating Matrimony", mandated by the USCCB last September, is perverted. Below are some slides from a presentation made by Msgr. James P. Moroney, Rector of Saint John's Seminary in Brighton, Mass., to priests of the Diocese of Worcester in October 2016:


So according to No. 29, the parish priest will determine whether or not the couple will be married with a Nuptial Mass or just with a simple ceremony. 




No. 45 insists that the priest meet the wedding party at the church door! The procession chart suggests BOTH sets of parents walk their children up to the altar! (Not quite a Jewish wedding, where the grandparents are also involved, but inconsistent with Catholic Tradition.) 


No. 48 (second form) says that the couple should process-in together.


Notice on this slide the words "for ever" are stricken-out of the opening greeting. This approves of divorce. Do you have your divorce attorney ready? 


The Arras are coins that represent the dowry. Today commonly only used by Hispanics. Since the rings are made of metal (gold and silver alloys) they represent these in part. 


The Lazo is a common custom in Hispanic communities. Usually in the from of a Rosary, it is placed on the couple after the marriage service in the Traditional Rite. The picture above shows a Latina bride marrying a white groom, so do we all have to perform this custom? 

Finally, if you want to know what the REAL Catholic Marriage rite is, take a look for yourself:


Friday, May 26, 2017

Pro-life Boston Mayoral candidate Bob Cappucci qualifies for the ballot

Since I'm not a Boston resident, I officially don't have any skin in this game, but every Boston registered voter should pay attention to the fact that they'll have a chance to elect a pro-life Mayor this fall. 

Bob Cappucci entered the Mayor's race at the last minute after being appalled by incumbent "Mohammed" Marty Walsh's plan to make Boston a place for abortion tourism. Mr. Cappucci was an elected School Committee member in the late 1980's before the City Charter was changed to have a Mayor-appointed board, and was the only member to oppose sex ed. in the Boston Public Schools. 

Mr. Cappucci is a daily communicant, according to C.J. Doyle of the Catholic Action League. Mass Resistance (led by Brian Camenker) is also backing him, and also noted that they've received a notice from a Charlie Baker supporter that she wouldn't support Bob because he's a registered Democrat, and would flip-flop on the issues of abortion and gay marriage if elected because of his affiliation. (Gov. Baker is pro-abortion, pro-homosexual, and signed the Bathroom Bill that allows men to use the ladies room.) 

Technically, Boston Mayoral elections are "non-partisan" where political parties cannot nominate single candidates. This format has been around since 1949 because Boston has been a one-party city forever and has not seen a GOP Mayor since Malcolm Nichols during the 1920's; it would be a waste of taxpayers' dollars to have an uncontested November election! 

So there will be 3 (Democratic) candidates in the Mayor's race: Walsh, City Councilor Tito Jackson, and Cappucci. The Primary on Sept. 26 will determine the top two for November. If Mr. Cappucci makes it the General Election, the DNC might run TV ads disavowing him because he doesn't fit the party's platform, which is a valid concern. 

I know Mr. Cappucci's candidacy can be considered a throwback to the Ray Flynn era, but there are currently no pro-life and pro-marriage and family office holders in Boston, and there haven't been any for over a decade. 

Good Luck Bob! 

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Why I won't be in Pittsburgh tomorrow night

Tomorrow evening, the dating website Catholic Match will be conducting the semi-annual National Catholic Singles Conference, with the East coast edition in Pittsburgh this weekend. Other than the costs, there is no reason for a single Catholic to attend. 

While the schedule advertises a Byzantine Divine Liturgy on Saturday morning (not Sunday), the event is hosting dances that have nothing to do with Catholicism, plus the other speakers are Theology of the Body experts. This alone should deter any single Catholic who is serious about finding a spouse and planning on living according to the real Magisterium of the Church. 

The advertised Closing Mass I would presume is the Novus Ordo, since many pictures of previous NCSCs show Novus Ordo Masses. Not worth the money spent. If the Byzantine Mass were moved to Sunday morning it would fulfill the obligation and there is no question of validity of the Eucharist. 

Since the Pittsburgh Diocese is an official sponsor, this is the reason why there's not even an option to attend a TLM for this conference on Sunday. 

Saturday, May 13, 2017

FATIMA 100

Fatima Statue from CFN Conference
Today is the day many Traditional Catholics have been waiting for: the one-hundredth anniversary of the First Apparition of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal.

Rorate Caeli is reporting that in the official program for Francis' visit to the Fatima Basilica, Bergoglio himself is "the bishop dressed in white" as published in the abridged Third Secret released by the Vatican in 2000. This explains a lot why Francis does not want to be referred to as "Pope." 

More and more evidence is out that the Consecration of Russia has not been done properly. After a century of warning the Popes, bishops, and priests and laymen have ignored Our Lady's request that "Russia" be consecrated to Her Immaculate Heart, and therefore, we have the following problems:

  • Unjust, endless wars
  • Weather not in tune with the seasons
  • Abortion, contraception, and same-sex marriage
  • Most Catholic churches, schools, seminaries, hospitals, social services have closed; the ones which remain are gravely compromised. 
  • True Catholic clergy who say the Tridentine Mass and administer the unaltered sacraments are endangered species. 
  • Christians (regardless of denomination) and Jews are persecuted in various forms, violent and un-violent. 
  • Poor economics
Once Our Lady's request is fulfilled, Her Immaculate Heart will Triumph! 


Friday, May 5, 2017

Yes, the TLM is the Mass of the Church

Until a future Pope requires Mass be said this way,
problems will persist. 
Today is the feast of Pope St. Pius V, the pontiff who codified the Traditional Latin Mass as a dogma of the Catholic Faith. 

Yes, the TLM is a matter of dogma. It must be believed by all Catholics. Quo Primum Tempore (July 14, 1570) issued by the same Holy Roman Pontiff states the wrath of Saints Peter and Paul will incur if clerics of any rank refuse to say the Mass and administer the Sacraments according to the ancient liturgical books, which actually date from Apostolic Times (hence the name "Tridentine" an improper and misleading adjective, since the Roman Rite was not invented during the Council of Trent). This includes the Pope, cardinals, and bishops who prevent their priests from doing so without just cause. 

Unfortunately, the crisis in the Church is worse than thought, and very likely we are living the Full Third Secret of Fatima. Nobody thought we'd have two living popes, one who said the True Mass (privately) and the other who's a puppet of George Soros. 

Most Catholic news outlets are discussing Phil Lawler's most recent Catholic Culture article regarding the 90% decline in active priests of the Archdiocese of Boston since 1967 and the official Catholic population in the Archdiocese a net increase of 100,000 to 1.9 million. (If you include the smaller suffragan dioceses Massachusetts has about 2.5 million Catholics on the rolls [36% of the total population].) With the exception of recent ordinands within the last decade, most of the 300 active archdiocesan priests are over 70 and there are simply not enough replacements. All three seminaries are full but none of the seminarians will be ordained to say the TLM; many of them are part of the pizza-loving Neo-Catechumemnal Way. Hence, any young man with a priestly vocation who wants to say the TLM is not going to become a diocesan priest, it's that simple. 

The SSPX only has a part-time rented office catacomb in the Archdiocese while the FSSP is no longer accepting applications to their U.S. seminary because (according to their bylaws) there are no more places to send them, Boston included. The only full-time TLM is at a parish that has been under the chopping block for four years now. If you travel to the Worcester Diocese (Central Mass.) there is nothing within the city limits or bordering suburbs. There is the Saint Benedict Center but as a monastery lay visitors who attend Mass there are not parishioners. There's no trace of Catholicism in Western Mass. and only not much down the Cape. 

Even in the Southern states there are more doctrinally faithful Catholics (less in overall population) and more priestly vocations, pretty much all dioceses are Novus Ordo (even if said revenently ad orientem), and will not get ordained in the Traditional rite. This should automatically turn-off plenty of more vocations to the diocesan priesthood.