Sunday, August 28, 2016

Being Born Into the New Covenant

The following is basically stream of consciousness type thinking...

I always find it interesting how certain things fall into place in a short period of time. Just yesterday, I was thinking a little bit about how it makes perfect sense for Catholics, Orthodox and several other non-Catholic Christians to hold the belief that it is a good and proper thing to baptize infants and children. And then, just this morning while watching some of the new Youtube uploads of Catholic Answers Live, I saw that apologist Tim Staples had just posted the same thought process I had a couple days earlier. Obviously, Catholic theology is no secret (the Church has taught the practice of infant baptism since the Apostolic Age)... but it's kinda cool how things fit together and I was able to reach this conclusion just as Mr. Staples was making his thoughts known. These thoughts of mine stemmed from a conversation I had the other day with an older relative, in which we agreed it's easy to know where Christ's Church truly lies; i.e. not in the various Protestant denominations, but in the Catholic Church. We both can't be right about salvation; we can both be wrong theoretically, but only one can be right on matters of salvation. Anyways, the point Mr. Staples and I were getting at, was that infant baptism is indeed biblical, especially when we're dealing with biblical types.So, Jesus said that he came to redeem all men, the entire human race. Infants, 2 year olds and 5 year olds fall into the human race. Now, it's clear that when St. Paul talks about baptism, he calls it the "circumcision of Christ", and also "the circumcision made without hands". As with all biblical types, the Old Testament type is fulfilled by the type in the New Testament. Circumcision in the Jewish religious tradition, was a type of water baptism that we see instituted by Christ in the Gospels. When did babies get circumcised? Once they were 8 days old, and at that point, they had the "sign of the covenant" upon them. They had entered into the covenant that God had made with Abraham. Of course, Jesus sacrificed Himself on the cross for all of us, therefore making the new covenant in His Blood. How are we today able to take part in this covenant? Baptism.
The Baptism- Julius L. Stewart

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

New Article on the Mass Said Ad Oriemtem on Catholic365

Forgot to post this, but I recently turned one of my dialogue blog posts into an essay format, which is now posted at Be sure to check it out, and you can find a snippet of the article below:

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Reflecting on "the Narrow Gate"

So in the Ordinary Form of the Latin Rite, today was the 21st Sunday of Ordinary Time. The readings, especially the Gospel reading from St. Luke, was especially timely today in a world that has seemingly become enamored with universalism instead of Truth. I have an amazingly well-versed pastor, who is great at Biblical exegesis, and often quotes the Church Fathers and other prominent Catholic clergy in his homilies. Today, he gave his homily on the readings from the 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time. He tied it in to last week’s Gospel, and told us how both of these Gospel readings, especially today’s are difficult passages for many. He told us many people would rather it not be included in the Bible, and that it’s something that causes him to really examine himself.
St. Luke Painting the Virgin and Child- Maarten van Heemskerck

Friday, August 19, 2016

Telling Our Children the Truth When It Comes to Our Gender

It seems every day we hear more and more about what Pope Francis calls the "gender ideology". We see at an alarming rate that buying into transgenderism as a good thing has become highly fashionable and politically correct. It's so sad to see many confused children, teenagers and even adults affected by this form of thinking; the form of thinking that one's sex is defined on how they perceive themselves subjectively, instead of considering the objective realities before them. Pope Benedict XVI had a good point on this phenomenon back in 2012:
“These words lay the foundation for what is put forward today under the term ‘gender’ as a new philosophy of sexuality. According to this philosophy, sex is no longer a given element of nature that man has to accept and personally make sense of: it is a social role that we choose for ourselves, while in the past it was chosen for us by society. The profound falsehood of this theory and of the anthropological revolution contained within it is obvious. People dispute the idea that they have a nature, given by their bodily identity, that serves as a defining element of the human being. They deny their nature and decide that it is not something previously given to them, but that they make it for themselves.” 
There were some headlines made in the last week or so, where a single mother has decided to allow her five year old son to live as a girl, and is now fighting the state of Texas to change its bathroom laws. How someone can not see this as child abuse is beyond me. This seems more like a severe form of Munchausen Syndrome than anything that can be attributed to this young child. I shudder to think that this mother will one day give her son artificial hormones to stop puberty, damaging the young child's perfectly functional male body. I shudder even more to think that a good portion of Western society thinks that this is OK and we should "live and let live", showing once again where moral relativism has got us.

I replied to a comment over on a prominent Catholic blogger's profile regarding this story, and saw how this moral relativism regarding transgenderism has really affected the general public. My interlocutor's words will be in red, mine in blue and a few other people's in various colors to make reading easier. Unfortunately, the "dialouge" ended in Tom launching a personal attack. Apparently, having discourse on opposing viewpoints isn't something many people want to do much at all. if you don't agree, you're apparently supposed to roll over and be quiet. This is why I always say "I don't agree with that" when someone tells me we should "agree to disagree". This person does not say that explictly, but it'll be apparent that he means as much by what he says towards the end of his final comment. This man, who I honestly can't tell if he's Catholic or not, seems to believe these young people taking artificial hormones is not a negative thing, morally or physically. We will see why this is false in both cases:
Christ Blessing the Children- Lucas Cranach the Elder

Thursday, August 11, 2016

To Humiliate Ourselves and Proclaim Our Unworthiness Before God is (Apparently) a Bad Thing

As I was perusing random news headlines (again), one ridiculous title caught my eye. Yes, the clickbait worked and I felt less intelligent for even doing so. I need to stop doing this to myself. In any event, the ridiculous headline read as such: Dear Pope Francis, End the Religious Ritual That Devalues Human Life. The sound of the collective rolling of eyes is deafening, no? You can read the whole article at the link above, but the most egregious part of this woman's article is as follows:
"Every single day before communion, millions of Christians verbally declare one of the most destructive phrases in human history... In the Bible, a Centurion soldier relates, 'Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof…' (Matthew 8:8)
"Dialogue and constructs that perpetuate 'I am not worthy' are the root of all evil behavior. It is divisiveness personified. By believing we are not worthy, we open the door for the mistreatment of ourselves and the mistreatment of others as we seek to assuage the psychological pain the false belief imparts. The guilt of unworthiness calls for us to judge ourselves and to judge others just as harshly."
The author, Chrisitne Horner is also a self-described "healed ex-Catholic, [and] her religion is love." She is basically a new age pantheist, as seen through her various writings. There are several reasons why this misguided person is absolutely wrong.
Christ and the Centurion- Adam Camerarius

Friday, August 5, 2016

More on Facing Ad Orientem

So the dust has settled somewhat following Cardinal Sarah's controversial, but really not-so controversial, comments on the Sacrifice of the Mass being celebrated ad oreintum, that is towards liturgical East facing the altar. There was an interesting thread I had been following over at Catholic Answers, and after enough time had passed, I finally decided to jump in after reading some confusing statements from an European priest and another person.

The discussion was in regards to Cardinal Nichols comments on what cardinal Sarah had said. In short, he formally deterred his priests from saying the Ordinary Form (OF) of the Mass ad orientem. This of course, is something that the Church has already spoken about, and proved that the Church does not necessarily favor one (ad orientem or versus populum) over the other. In the thread I replied to, the charge was made that the Church now favors worship facing the people. This of course couldn't be further from the truth, as seen in the link above. My reply follows after the jump, and I'll probably make this into an article at some point, but for now, I'll just post my direct comments on the issue, which is alos supported by various quotes from Doctors of the Church who talk about the use of ad orientem during the Holy Mass is actually an apostolic tradition.