A Case for the Papacy

Whenever the Chair of Saint Peter is vacant, the crows begin to buzz and bicker and snipe at the Church and the Papacy. The abdication of Benedict XVI has stimulated even more excitement among that murder of crows – joined by any number of so-called Catholics.

The Citizen has been absent from writing lately for a variety of reasons, but I am thankful for those who have roused me from my slumber to enter once more into the fray against heresy and heterodoxy and just plain ignorance.

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The Word from the Womb

Today’s Gospel is one I’ve always enjoyed hearing – it gives me a taste of the sheer joy that is Christmas for Christians.  Today, it served a different purpose.  For some time, the Citizen has been concerned about a schism not only among Catholics but Christians as a whole – and that great divide is abortion. Now, how does the first Chapter of Luke become a lesson for the straying members of the flock?

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A Primer on the ‘Primacy of Conscience’

A state senator in North Dakota is taking a page from Nancy Pelosi’s playbook and enthroning himself as a Doctor of the Church and learned theologian. He is obviously neither – and – if I were a constituent, I would contemplate his suitability for office. His understanding of the First Amendment is chilling for any person who would seek to speak his mind.  The letter he issued can be found here. Today, the Citizen will dust off his recollection of logic and try to explain the myriad flaws in Mr. Mathern’s epistle. Continue reading

The Wheat and the Weeds

The Citizen has been engaged in a forum discussion that has turned to the debate on ‘rightwing’ Catholics and ‘leftwing’ Catholics. There should be no such thing. There are only orthodox Catholics and heterodox Catholics. Any Catholic espousing positions or supporting politicians who embrace policies contrary to the Magisterium, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and the traditions of our Faith are heterodox. Unfortunately for some, the Democratic party strongly supports several issues that place them outside of Catholic teachings. Embryonic stem cell research, abortion, gay marriage – all of these platforms directly contravene Catholic principles.

The Citizen has written any number of essays on intrinsic evils, the discipline of being Catholic, and the need to be compassionate and loving but draw the line on tolerating or supporting behavior that is contrary to the Magisterium. I have hyper-linked to some of these essays if you are interested. Some things simply cannot be supported, even if the party or person in question support any number of worthy causes. With the current Democratic party, those issues – abortion, gay marriage, and stem cell research – are non-negotiable.

But isn’t there ‘room’ in Catholicism for all types? Sorry, no. Christ Himself illustrated that this would be a problem in Matthew. In the Parable of wheat and weeds (Matthew 13:24-30), Christ tells a story that reminds the Citizen of the predictment the greater Catholic community in the United States faces.

The kingdom of heaven may be likened to a man who sowed good seed in his field. While everyone was asleep his enemy came and sowed weeds all through the wheat, and then went off. When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well.

The parable tells that the servants tending the fields tell their master of the weeds growing among the wheat. He knows that there is little he can do but to allow the weeds to grow among the wheat, and – when the time was right – to pull out the weeds and harvest the good crop. The enemy? Satan – or those seeking to divide us by misusing our teachings in a heterodox manner.

The weeds are those ‘Catholics’ who espouse heretical and unorthodox teachings who dwell among us and claim that they are like us. The fact is that the weed bears no grain, no sustenance and actually chokes out the healthy and life-giving grain. For some reason or another, the Church in America has allowed these weeds to flourish, weakening and dividing us.

It is time to prune the fields. We will lose the weeds, but we may lose some good grain as well. Better this then to allow the field to run wild with weeds that will never yield comfort to those in need. It is my prayer that this will not be so or that those we may lose will return to us when they see that the wisdom of Matthew 7:13:

Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.

Hopefully, it is clearer that it shouldn’t be a ‘right’ thing or a ‘left’ thing – it should be a Catholic thing. That road is hard and the gate is narrow.  But those who brave that path and suffer through that gate will reap great rewards – not only for themselves but for countless others.

I pray that there are democrats who will take the party back from those who seek to choke the field with weeds. There must be solid democratic candidates who are in Communion with the Holy See. Find them. Support them. And don’t be surprised if other Catholics ignore the letter after their name and vote for them because they are good Catholics and good citizens.


May God bless you all.


Murder by the Numbers…

Earlier this week, Harry Reid announced that he would use every means at his disposal to block any Continuing Resolution or spending bill that contained ideological language – and specifically mentioned the attempt to de-fund Planned Parenthood. His argument – and that of other supporters of Planned Parenthood – is that most of their services have nothing to do with abortion. A little simple math proves that this is far from the truth.

Planned Parenthood released their 2009 ‘Service Report’ recently  – and it paints a fairly grim picture.

They claim that abortions make up ‘3 percent’ of their services – but that 3% is 332,278 aborted children. They did 977 adoption referrals and treated some 7,021 ‘prenatal clients.’If we do some math, we discover that for every adoption referral PP made, they aborted 340 unborn children.  For every woman they assisted to carry a child to term, they aborted 47.

What about the other 97% of Planned Parenthood services? 35% was contraception – including 1,537,180 doses of ‘emergency contraception’. What’s that? That would be the ‘morning after’ or ‘plan b’ pill, a method that according to Catholic teaching is abortion. According to the Catechism, life begins at the instant of conception. Ideologically, plan b is not much different to a Catholic in communion with the Holy See as a conventional surgical abortion. Of the spectrum of contraceptive services Planned Parenthood provided in 2009, fully one quarter were ‘plan b’ interventions.

If emergency contraception is considered to be a method of abortion by Catholics – and it is – then abortion makes up considerably more than the 3% claimed by Planned Parenthood.  If every dose of plan b resulted in the termination of life, the total number of abortions as defined by the Magisterium would be 1,869,456. Planned Parenthood claimed they treated some 11 million clients  – this means that about 1 in 10 used Planned Parenthood to abort an unwanted child.

The American Life League estimates that the ‘3%’ of surgical abortions Planned Parenthood performs account for some 40% of their income. Dawn Johnson, a former PP exec, stated that abortions were encouraged as a means to ‘offset’ less profitable services like STD treatment.

Mr. Reid is concerned about ‘ideology’. Well, so is the Citizen. He is embracing an ideology that advocates the business of eliminating undesirable life. When this is done to humans living outside of the womb, we call it genocide.

Mr. Reid calls it healthcare.

And he criticizes my ideological failings?