Thursday, December 27, 2012

Cries to Our Lord,...

     This post was written a few months back during a time when I was in a bad place,... Yes, I know I'm supposed to upload SSPX apologetical posts, defending the Magesterium,..I figured for a change of pace, why not show people my soul?,.. Show that I'm normal perhaps, and that God is calling an entirely new generation of priests to serve,...


     Why me?  My prayer reasonates, penetrates and stabs.  At times, more often than not, I lie awake asking Jesus to take this cup from me, then I experience the morning prayer and all is good again.  The truth is, I cannot envision my life as anything but priesthood, but at the same time, I ask myself, and my Lord,.'Why did you let me experience all that life has to offer?'  Why can't I just be like the guy who couldn't catch a football or dodgeball?  After all, they are the ones who are supposed to be priests!  Myself?  I was supposed to be married, with my 3.5 kids, coaching early morning hockey and Jiu Jitsu,.. until You called me Lord Jesus.  Now, I find myself inside the Seminary and loving it, truly embracing where I'm supposed to be, (At least for now anyway,..) yet upset that I'm happy with that reality.  I had it all,.money, girls, yet I was missing my smile?!?!..Other people have their smile!  Are they going to hell?  That's not for me to say Lord,..but why do I find myself thinking it so much?  My smile lay in my vocational discerment,..and my smile gets bigger as time goes on,...

     I finished my first session, and with the aid of an awesome Spiritual Director, (The Kyokushin Killer Fr Guy Guindon pss) and an awesome support staff, I am now addicted (if that's the right word to use,..?) to meditation and time with Our Lord, truly present in the most Blessed Sacrament.   I now have that relationship with Jesus, where there are even times where I 'yell' at Him,..albeit spiritually,.. lol!  Lord Jesus, Have Mercy on me, a sinner,...

St Jean Viannay,.................................................... Ora pro nobis!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012

Vatican/SSPX Intro Part1.

      Where to begin?  A little intro would suffice.  Well, it seems the blogosphere as well as Facebook is a wash with pseudo theologians and arm chair Canon lawyers all but correcting the Holy See, the ‘nature’ of the Liturgy, using terms like ‘Traditional Catholic’ or ‘In Union with the SSPX..’ Still others claim to form the ‘Call to Action’ and already have begun calling for a Vatican III where women priests, gay married clergy, and clown Masses are part and parcel of the everyday rubrics…. Well, surprise, surprise, is where I stand, In union with Rome, willing to suffer through all that I see (purification?) until the Church passes through Her agony, and Passion so She can attain Her fruition in time which is Her Resurrection mirroring Her Divine Bridegroom Jesus Christ!  Call to action?  Let’s try (To quote Mother Angelica,..) a ‘Call to Holiness!’  We will sanctify ourselves first, then let Our Lord and Our Lady work out the kinks and nuttiness later. (Note that this does not mean that we stand idly by and do nothing!  We do much more by praying and making sacrifices..) We need to remember, even Jesus counted among His apostles Judas Iscariot.  Can it be really that far-fetched that the same concept can be held true for today?  Wait a minute!  This actually is not a new concept, as every Council has had a period of a ‘settling in’ before an equilibrium can be reached.   There is no such thing as a ‘pre’ conciliar Church or a ‘post’ conciliar Church, just the Church! 


     The Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X, a group currently, canonically in an irregular position, though ongoing talks with Rome should in due time see parts of it return to the ordinary Magisterium and enjoy full communion.   A large amount came back in 1988, when Ecclesia Dei was established, in the wake of a ‘latae sentinae’ excommunication decree whereby the SSPX performed a schismatic act by consecrating 4 bishops without Papal approval.  The reality is however, that Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre was already off doing his own thing since 1976, The Pope’s problem wasn’t necessarily the consecrations, but the men he intended to consecrate, among them, Richard Williams.   So when Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre decided to go into business for himself, he performed a public schismatic act, and put himself and his illicit Bishops outside communion with Rome.  Over the next few weeks, Confessions will try to go a little more ‘in depth’ as it pertains two key issues, from the Society’s standpoint, the Liturgy being one and Religious 'freedom' being the other.

In the meantime, Hope everyone is having a blessed Advent!

St Pius X,…………………………….ora pro nobis!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Disciples to Apostles,.Priests for Tomorrow,..

   First off, a shout out to Fr Jason Piper for his visit to Cybertron, his post was awesome and hopefully the ‘Clerictron’ will make regular visits.  What was written regarding priestly promises and the Liturgy was intelligent, well argued and to the point.   Padre Pipes will always have a forum to speak on ‘Confessions.’  Safe to say that modernists, heterodox and yes,..well heretics too,..all had a little pee pee in their pants after reading Fr Jason’s post, this of course pre supposes that said groups have intellectual acumen to understand it.  Now on to some reflections,…

   Yup, one of those posts again, perhaps because I really have nothing to speak about or perhaps because I have accepted the fact that while in discernment for priesthood, I am currently where God wants me to be.  My personality remains the same, but I have to acknowledge that my prayer life and thus, my soul is at peace.  What that means is that I’m accepting the reality that this is a supernatural call from Jesus that requires a complete ‘Yes!’  Essentially Jesus doesn’t want 95% of you, He wants all of you, and that means ‘dying to yourself..’ (Shout out to the Evangelical protestant community,..yes they can teach us things too! ;))
Well, I am nearly finished my first semester/session as a seminarian, and to tell you the honest truth, I couldn’t be any happier!  There are moments whereby my own ego, frailty and shades of my past life enter and attempt to disturb me.  What do I mean?  Well for one, living in a house with 30 other guys, not to mention retired old priests can pose its challenges(God doesn’t take away your manhood, and egos, temperaments as well as stress can cause friction, not to mention 50 men burping, farting and scratching).  Logging onto Facebook and seeing friends getting married, girls I’ve dated with other guys, and functions/events that I would gone to in my past life can all play mind games with you..  In this light, I am reminded of St Paul, who after meeting the Risen Christ on the road to Damascus, goes to meet St Peter, then into the desert for what you would call ‘formation.’  After this period does one transition from Disciple to Apostle! (Credit Msgr Frank Leo CSS for that line) . 

   Our late Holy Father, Pope John Paul II issued an apostolic letter Pastores Dabo Vobis and in it, he cites four criteria regarding the formation of future priests.  To briefly go over them and summarize, they are as follows…

-The Spiritual.  Not just Mass and Rosary, but includes personal meditation (especially before the Blessed Sacrament), Praying the Liturgy of the Hours, Adoration and Lectio Divina/Regularly reading and praying Scripture.   In prayer is where we meet Jesus personally, we can know about Him, but if we don’t know Him personally, all the Theology in the world can’t help you.

-The Intellectual.   A proper understanding of philosophical first principals is essential.  Starting with the pre Socratics, Aristotle, Augustine, Aquinas (all awesome!) all the way to an understanding of modern thought, the nuttiness of Descartes, Spinoza, Kant and in my opinion, the reigning heavyweight Champion of intellectual chaos and verbal diarrhea, MARTIN HEIDEGGER!!! (emphasis added, and yes, I’m biased…)  This prepares us for Theology, if we know and Love Jesus, then we want to know all about Him!  Scripture, Sacred Tradition, Liturgy, Ecclesiology, name it!

-The Pastoral.  Jesus encounter Zaccheus up a tree, He doesn’t condemn,..Jesus encounters the adulterous woman, He doesn’t condemn,.. Jesus promises Paradise to the Good thief,..  I think you get my point.  Jesus encounters, offers Mercy, but doesn’t leave them there,..He leaves them with Truth!  ‘Go and sin no more!’  A call to Holiness!  Being Pastoral doesn’t mean smiling all the time and never getting sanguine, it means protecting and feeding your sheep.  Meeting people where they are, (St Paul in Acts; 17,..usually syrum for SSPX or sedevacante people wanting nothing to do with Ecumenism,..) then proposing Jesus Christ, while respecting the free will of the individual receiving the message.  Here I am reminded of Aquinas,.(Information will only be received by the mode of the receiver,..’Religious Freedom,…VII,..cough,..cough…) .  The Spirit of VII crowd sees being ‘pastoral’ as the opposite and it means tolerating any and everything, you know the whole 397 women Eucharistic ministers on the alter, carrying their purses in procession, as well Fr Feelgood McButterfly not preaching on anything substantial instead speaking about the plight of Northern Cariboo.  The Bishop’s staff provides the most beautiful symbolism, the hook to keep the sheep close, the spear to keep the wolves apart.  (memo to Spirit of VII cookoo crowd, Evil exists, is a fallen angel, and wants your soul…)

-The Anthropological.  This is a dimension of growth far too ignored.  To maintain a healthy balance between ‘work and play’ so to speak because well, keeps you sane.  The key is to let Jesus sanctify what you are doing.  I still avidly train, usually 5 days out of 7 a mixture of resistance, metabolic conditioning and Jiu Jitsu.  As well,.to maintain proper relationships especially with women.  There is a difference between heading to a movie with a girl at 2pm in the afternoon, or still having a coffee or lunch as opposed to being alone with a girl, in private, after 7pm at night.  Judgement and spiritual direction is a key element. 

   So there you have it, the recipe is simple, centred completely on Jesus, nourished by the Eucharist, prayer, The Scriptures, the Blessed Mother and of course each other…Then spreading out into avenues,..

PS:  I am working on a post showing some blatant inconsistencies within The SSPX.  Are they sedevacante?  Are they not?  Some of their own members aren’t even sure,…Stay tuned!! (That should tell you something!)

St Jean Viannay,…………………………Ora pro nobis!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Piper's Pit? Naaah,..Fr Piper's POST!

A few months back, I mentioned that there would be 'guest bloggers' on 'Confessions..'  Well today is one of those days!  The shuttle just landed on Cybertron, along with some valuable energeon cubes and a dose of Padre Pipes!!!!  Think back to Rowdy Piper smashing a coconut on Jimmy Snuka's head,.. Well Father be laying the smackdown on heterodoxy!

A friend told me about some liturgical abuses that happened at a mass she recently attended (at a high profile parish to boot). She said the priest who presided the Eucharistic celebration did not distribute Holy Communion; rather he had a layperson giving Holy Communion in his place. Then, after mass, she asked the priest why he didn’t distribute Holy Communion? He said he had to “wash the dishes” and that the laity are to have a more active role. There are several abuses present here: 1) The presider is to distribute Holy Communion, he is the primary Eucharistic Minister. 2) Referring to the purification of the sacred vessels as “washing the dishes” is completely disrespectful, and downright scandalous. 3) The priest totally missed the boat on VCII’s call of a greater participation by the faithful. These abuses are very upsetting; because they just flat out shouldn’t happen. They are also very disturbing because this is not an isolated incident. In the end, these abuses cause a strain on the faithful who love the liturgy, and are not asking for anything more than the mass to be faithfully celebrated as prescribed by Holy Mother Church.

Recently we celebrated the feast of The Dedication of the Lateran Basilica. The gospel reading (John 2:13-22) for the feast was on Jesus' righteous anger displayed in the Temple due to disrespect for the sacred space that is used for profit rather than prayer. Christians, you must allow Jesus' actions to inspire you, as He is a model for us in all things. When you see injustices going on in the Church by unfaithful shepherds, do not accept them. When you see (and are subjected to) abuse going on in the liturgy, do not accept them. When you hear unfaithful shepherds spreading error, do not accept them.

Flare up with a fire of righteous anger in union with Jesus, for love of His Church. Speak to the pastor, go to the bishop if necessary. Challenge the errors and outright sacrileges going on in the Lord's house. Be like the widow in the parable about the unjust judge (see Luke 18:1-8). For as Christ says, “will not God vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will vindicate them speedily” (Luke 18:7-8a). Therefore, be persistent, in a charitable manner, as you call for faithfulness from your shepherds.

The Church is the Body of Christ; people of God with Jesus as our head. The bishops and priests are sent to serve the people of God, to serve you, as Christ’s representatives! Not to serve themselves. The cleric is to be modeled after Jesus who, “did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 28:28). Therefore, bishops and priests are not to push their teachings, doctrines, ultimately their own vision of the Church based on their will. They are to present the Church's teachings, doctrines, and God’s vision for the Church according to His will... faithfully in its entirety.

It is the Father’s desire, and therefore your God given right; to have bishops & priests 100% faithful to Holy Mother Church. I would also suggest that it is a God given right to worship in your home parish that is 100% faithful to Holy Mother Church, by adhering to all the Church proposes regarding the governance and life of each Catholic community. Do not settle for anything less than all Jesus desires for you, which the Church is to give you, through Her shepherds who promised faithful adherence to all the Church requires from Her ministers.

At his ordination, the one to be ordained is asked by the bishop, “Are you resolved to celebrate the mysteries of Christ faithfully and religiously as the Church has handed them down to us for the glory of God and the sanctification of God's people?” To which the one to be ordained replies, “I am.” This promise is made to God, to the Church (all the baptised), and I would include this promise is made to all of humanity as well; for the priest is to minister directly or indirectly to every soul, so all may come to know and accept Jesus for eternal salvation. God, and the Church, expects the priests to make good on their promise.

Now, it is a terrible thing, and not to be taken lightly, when the ordained does not make good on the promises he made. He is essentially sinning against God and humanity. In abusing the liturgy or spreading errors; the bishop or priest is actually publicly sinning by breaking his promises for all to see, which is scandalous. In doing this, he becomes a false witness. Through his actions contrary to what the Church requires of him, he (be it his intention or not) actively and flagrantly spreads contempt against Holy Mother Church by disregarding his promises, and what the Church requires of him.

With this reality unfolding in The Church, one thing is sure; bishops & priests need prayers! Some become discouraged and write-off their priests as hopeless heretics. Do not dismiss them! Pray for the clergy, your shepherds, that we remain faithful to the awesome task of serving the people of God. Pray that we remain faithful to our promises. Sometimes it is a misplaced intention to do good. Sometimes it is ignorance. Sometimes the ego gets in the way. Sometimes it is down right disobedience and rebellion. Oftentimes bishops and priests face great battles on many different fronts and on a daily basis! Should some of the clergy have fallen away, fallen into error, fallen into unfaithfulness; pray hard for them. At the same time, and this must be reiterated, do not accept anything except what they have promised to do!

Finally, and above all, entrust your bishops and priests (we are ‘yours’ because Christ called us to Holy Orders, and entrusted us with this sacred responsibility for your good. We exist for ministering to you!) to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. She will help mold them after her Son's priestly Sacred Heart.

Mary, Queen of the Clergy; pray for us
Saint John Vianney, patron saint of priests; pray for us
Saint Michael the Archangel, defender of the Church; pray for us

Friday, November 16, 2012

The Warrior Pope,..

Obviously we Christians we follow Christ.  There can be no higher King.  Yet sometimes our fragile humanity calls upon certain imaginary heroes to fulfill our idea of the good.  Then again, we can also look up to sports stars.  Chuck Norris, (the mythical one?) what about Segal, Van Damme or Bruce Willis?  Still what about fictional superheroes, like Optimus Prime, Wolverine, Superman and the Hulk?  We all look up to heroes, myself, the ones I mentioned, notwitstanding.  I will also include Royce Gracie, Renzo Gracie, Bas Rutten, and still others.  One contemporary hero stands above the rest…He passed away in 2005,..Pope John Paul II, The Great.  Why am I writing this post now?  The answer is that way too many people considering themselves magistral authority seem ready to label him a modernist.  Obviously this is due to his (seemingly) lackluster approach to the Liturgy.  Well, perhaps now is the time for a much needed apologetic defense of the Pope who from a secular standpoint saved the Catholic Church from an internal dislocation.  As Catholics, we know that it is the Holy Spirit who is ultimately in charge, yet if we come at it from a pure academic/historical perspective,.Holy Father John Paul II will go down as one of the champion defenders of the Faith, and together with Cardinal Ratzinger, a veritable legion of doom and terror of all things modernist.  Credit and shout out to my brother seminarian Richard for an awesome discussion, as we both enjoy smacking both the lefty loonie toonies and the fringe crack pot extreme right(sedevacante) position.

Let’s set the stage for his ascendancy to the Papacy, the aftermath of Vatican II, and Pope Paul VI’s ‘Humanae Vitae.’  The sudden death of Pope John Paul I.  The Church is in massive need for a clean up, the ‘batsignal’ is flashed to Poland…

1978;  Inherits a Church reelings from the nutty ‘spirit’ of VII crowd, mass defections from the Priesthood, a chancery office full of heretics, the sexual revolution, feminism, and especially in the Quebec, the Quiet Revolution. While the Faithful remaining, are now in the full swing of the Charismatic renewal, not that that in itself is bad, however, some took it too far, and left the Faith not seeing the need for a ministerial Priesthood. 
So what does he do?  Creates World Youth Days!  Takes Bishops, at that time nobody knew who they were and puts them on a stage, saying to the flock,.these are your Bishops!  Now they become known and well, so do their,..ahemm, theological positions!  The media now know who they are,.(cough, cough Bernadin,..couch..) Next, creates the Ecclesia Dei Commission establishing the FFSP, asking Bishops to be generous in allowing the use of the 1962 Rite of Mass, now known as Extraordinary Form.  Done in response to Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre backing out of a document he SIGNED!  (Ego?)

Sends ‘Fr’ Hans Kung into theological limbo by removing his faculties as a Catholic theologian!  Essentially saying, that’s right Hans, ain’t Catholic!  Took a trip to latin America and reigned in the libertation theology movement which had become in some circles, a Christian marxism,..Infallibly declared that the Church has no authority to ordain women whatsoever, and sends feminists frothing at the mouth while lining up for rabies vaccinations.  (Ordination Sacerdotalis 1994)  Writes the Encyclical Evangelium Vitae as a response to the abortion crowd, Catholics and otherwise as well as reasserts through the Theology of the Body, traditional Catholic teaching on sexuality and republishes the Catechism of the Catholic Church.  Finally publishes ‘Dominus Iesus’ (1999) as a response to goofball ecuMENTALists trying to undermine the Faith. 

To conclude, we must contextualize John Paul II before we judge him.  Sometimes all is not what we see, and that Pope Benedict inherited a much different Church that John Paul II.  The heretics are dangerous, but getting older.  The secular world however has completely altered.  What we need now is another hero to rise up, not just publish words.  To act!  Remember John Paul II’s speech in Sicily?  We need another courageous Bishop especially in the West!  Right now we are in the midst of Liturgical Reform, and Benedict, continuing the work of John Paul II through the guidance of the Holy Spirit.  ‘The Gates of hell will not prevail against her.’ (St Matthew’s Gospel, you know the verse!)

Our Lady of Fatima,………………….ora pro nobis!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Baum, Voris and Rosica....(All walk into a bar,..)

Sounds like the beginning of a joke,..So much news in Catholic circles has been given to Fr Thomas Rosica (Salt and Light) and his recent interview with pseudo ‘theologian’/modernist heretic Gregory Baum, that yes,..I have decided to weigh into this debate and give my two cents.  It seems that certain ‘so-called’ traditionalists think I’ve abandoned ship because I dared criticize their little poster boy with the funky hair, Michael Voris.  Well newsflash!!!!  I have never critiqued the content of Voris, however I do critique his approach at times especially on the Vortex, which is offered for free, and at times is the only tool some people watch to fuel their anger at the lack of leadership of the hierarchy.   Sometimes I think Voris has a giant Teletraan-1 computer with satelites (gratuitous Transformers reference) at his headquarters which allows him pinpoint every abuse and heresy from around the world.  

So to calm the masses, I am dead set against Fr Rosica inviting Baum on Salt and Light’s ‘Witness.’  I don’t know what he was thinking, inviting an excommunicated ex-priest onto the show, to celebrate Vatican II(more like the ‘spirit/poltergeist’ of VII as Vatican II is to be read within the hermeneutic of continuity)  As Catholics we have enough trouble trying to figure out our own identity that we don’t need theological spin doctors who espouse everything from so-called gay ‘marriage,’ pro-choice and every other goofy proposition, not to mention intrinsic evil,.. that had NOTHING to do with Vatican II.  We can argue that Professor Baum desires the ‘good’ of the Church, but that is ultimately a non issue.  We do not need Baum’s brainwashing nonsense penetrating Catholics at a time when the Reform of the Reform is well underway.

At the same time, (Traditionalists hold your breath,..) I was also against Fr Rosica interviewing Bishop Fellay of the SSPX.  The reasons are pretty much the same.  We do not need Fellay, (Still in schism) confusing Catholics as well.  The SSPX, despite probably good intentions by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre as well as Fellay, are in an ‘irregular’ communion.  Obediance is a virtue, and usually sets out the roadmap to a person’s holiness.  Examples of Padre Pio, and Sr Lucy of Fatima come to mind, they were silenced and they obeyed. 

To conclude, I am and remain a loyal son of the Magisterium, nothing changes.  I follow Jesus, not Voris, Baum, Corapi, Rosica or any other personality or outlet.  I am against Salt and Light interviewing people outside the Church, when it concerns matters of the Church.  Whether they be excommunicated or in schism, for whatever reason.  I do not know Fr Rosica’s intentions, perhaps he has to answer to investors?  Maybe he's starved for ratings? (my opinion,..)  Remember he has to shepherd souls, and we are not in his position.  As for Michael Voris?  I like him, I have met him, I think the Church needs him.  My own experience however, is that one can pinpoint problems, that’s fine.  However we need to find solutions,…that’s the tricky part.  Our Lady gave us a way through the Rosary, fasting and prayer.

***On a final note, I will congratulate the President of the United States who was elected Tuesday night for a second term.  Obviously my readership knows my views.  I will ask for prayers, for the conversion of the heart of Barrack Obama, so that he may realize his views on abortion are simply demonic.  As well for a change of his heart regarding religious freedom,..The stage is set for the Catholic Church to undergo persecution, and the cause?  ‘Luke warm’ catholics.  Cardinal Francis George of Chicago’s words keep ringing in my head, especially in light of potentially becoming a priest,.to paraphrase, -‘ I will probably die in a bed, my successor probably in a jail cell, and his successor will be killed.***

Our Lady of Guadalupe,……………………..ora pro nobis.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

MASS Breakdown Simplified

The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the Divine Liturgy, the representation of Christ’s Sacrifice on the Cross in unbloody manner.  A gesture first posed by Jesus at the Last Supper, an act that transcends time and space, in which the setting was a seder meal.  What is my point throughout all of this, well an attempt (ATTEMPT) to briefly underline the nature of the Mass, and to a certain extent, its evolution.  Vatican II reformed the Rite, much to the chagrin of many Faithful, however an authentic conversation must be undertaken between the intent as opposed to what actually is transpiring.  There is a reason that Pope John Paul II and now Pope Benedict XVI initiated a ‘Reform of the Reform.’  This blog post will concentrate on the Roman rite, which has not just two but nine rites inside of it.  Many so-called ‘Traditionalists’ seem to think that the older form of Mass was perfectly celebrated all the time, and that Vatican II’s Reform came out of left field, when in actuality, Liturgical Reform was underway before VII came into anyone’s radar screen.  Well,.the reality of this assertion is not the case.  Examples?  Communion-rite drive by ‘liturgies’ with no Mass while the other priest is at the foot of the Alter beginning his Mass (picture almost a baton race, whereby the baton is passed to the next racer.  Parish announcents during the ‘Offertory,’ (instead of after the Communion concluding prayer…) and a Liturgical spin cycle which repeated the same Gospel sequence, inaudible most of the time, and a faithful assisting at Mass praying the Rosary,.(Sorry Michael Voris, this is wrong, despite the fact that the intent is good, and yes good and holy people recite the Rosary.) 

The Mass that my generation grew up on is what is properly known as the ‘ordinary’ Form of Mass.  Once again to be fair, did we really implement Sacrosanctum Consilium?,..The answer is obvious.  The ordinary form of Mass is in actually the more ancient rite of celebrating the Eucharist, despite what the so-called Traditionalists claim.  (here)  Okay so now that you’ve seen words from Justin Martyr,..we can move forward.  We will now attempt to break down the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite.

Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite (Sunday style!)

What we need:
1.        A Bishop or priest and an Assembly
2.       Missel and a Lectionary
3.       A Place suitable for worship, with the Alter at the Centre
4.       Proper Matter, (ie bread, wine, Chalice, ciborium, paten, corporal, purificator)

Just like in boxing/MMA let’s break down the Liturgy!

First off we have the opening Rites.  Usually an announcement is made or a bell rung to signal the Assemble to rise (Standing is the proper position for prayer).  ‘Let us stand to begin our praise and worship of God.’

**Abuse Alert number 1.** The master of ceremonies says ‘Let us stand to welcome our celebrant.’ Uhh noooo,..

Next up we have the penitential Rite,..Where the community collectively anticipates to prayerfully prepare themselves by acknowledging their (our) sinfulness.  After this we have the Gloria, and the opening rites are concluded with an opening prayer.

**Abuse Alert number 2** Priests saying ‘Good Morning,..’ There is nothing wrong with that except, if the congregation has already made the sign of the Cross,..its goofy and hokey,.. Before it?  Fine.  Once we ‘dial the telephone’ we should be giving our attention to God the Father!

Liturgy of the Word

First Reading, usually from the Old Testament, then a Responsorial Psalm, then the Second Reading.  After suitable meditation time between them.  The Alleluia starts and the priest or deacon, should there be one, makes his way to the Ambo, carrying the Book of the Gospels.  The Gospel is read to the Assembly and next up, the Word is broken open with the homily.

Abuse alert number 3.  The Responsorial Psalm is replaced by some crappy syrupy protestant song, or campy Catholic song from the 1970s.. Or still the Gospel read by a layperson or nun (woman religious…) or my favorite the homily given by a layperson or nun having NOTHING to do with the Gospel of the day,.. Some nutty ‘so-called social justice leftist nonsense regarding fair trade coffee with funds going to pro choice movements...

Next up we have the profession of Faith, the Nicene Creed, and the Universal prayers, (Church Universal, local, world and regional.)  We finally conclude the Liturgy of the Word.

Liturgy of the Eucharist

Priest goes to the Alter as bread and wine are brought forth.  The priest will prepare the gifts, and position them on the Alter, then will begin to spiritually prepare himself.   This is done quietly or in a low voice, and usually at this time the collection is taken up.  The priest while offering the bread and wine elevates a little,.why?  Because its bread and wine!  Jesus isn’t sacramentaly there yet! 

**Abuse number 4.**  This one drives me batty, because sometimes I feel the priest is acting in a theatre and just really being silly.  During the offertory prayers, he says them loudly,.(people should be praying, those that aren’t can respond with the ‘Blessed be God forever..’ again though quietly) and his arms are extended to the ceiling.

Next up the Eucharistic Prayer, inside of which is the Consecration.  After the words of Institution are pronounced, the Eucharistic presence is venerated so that the kneeling assembly realizes the Real Presence.  It is a veneration with elevation, because the prayer continues.  A bell is rung to call the people’s attention.  The Eucharistic prayer concludes with the Doxology, ‘Through Him With Him,…’ At this point is when the Sacrifice of the Son is offered to the Father.  This is the part where the priest should be completely elevating!  This is followed by the great Amen.  Then the Our Father, the kiss of peace and the Agnus Dei, (when the fraction of the Eucharist occurs.)

**Abuse Alert 5**  Where to begin?, ‘standing’ at the consecration is a start.  The priest not following the words as they are written.  Ad libbing, and my another one that ‘grinds’ my gears, the priest breaking the Host, when he is consecrating,..once again, not theatre time.. The Our Father where everybody holds hands turns the Eucharist into a celebration of the people,..and the kiss of peace looks like a backyard chat with the neighbour over the fence.  The priest rushing off the sanctuary to shake hands with everyone!

The Communion Rite begins, where communion is given hierchically beginning with the Presider all the way to the Assembly.. (Do we need 325 ‘Extra ordinary ministers usually all women?) …
Prayer after Communion concludes the Liturgy of the Eucharist.  Then we can read the parish announcements.  There are some parishes which do the announcements before the concluding prayer, and it just doesn’t make sense, breaks up the Liturgy of the Eucharist.  Finally the final Blessing and dismissal.

Tired,..God Bless!  

St Jean Vianney,…………….Ora pro nobis!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Diocesan VS Religious

A gang war?  Not really, more along the lines of a ‘catholic’ (universal) aspect of our Church.  When a man is called to discern God’s call, the common approach is either to say marriage or priesthood.  Well, as they say, ‘different strokes for different folks.’  Jesus calls people to discern many walks and many spiritualities, all of them Catholic obviously!  (Unlikely that God will call anyone to Rastafarianism,..just sayin'...)

Diocesan priesthood is its own unique charism, and has at its heart, the local parish community.  The priest answers to the local ordinary, in his case, usually the Bishop of his diocese, and essentially celebrates the Sacraments, and does pastoral work by meeting people where they are.  Diocesan priests can work as hospital chaplains, educators, in jails or simply out of the local Parish doing everyday administrative work along with Spiritual Direction.  They are required to live celibate, chaste lives, and are encouraged to have a simplistic lifestyle as it pertains to possessions.  (Meaning, if I'm assigned a parish, I'm bringing my car and Playstation 3 with me,..)

Religious communities operate in a different manner.  Consisting of both priests and brothers, They usually contain within their spirituality, a certain charism of their founder.  Franciscans named after St Francis of Assisi would follow his simplistic way of life, working with the poor, the marginalized.  Dominicans on the other hand, following St Dominic, devote themselves to preaching.  While Jesuits, in following their founder, concentrate on teaching and act as educators and missionaries.  What they all have in common are the three vows, poverty, chastity and obedience.  (Meaning they have no personal possessions as everything belongs to the community, including their cars and yes,.(sigh) ...even their Playstation 3s...)  Their prayer life is centred usually on ‘Ora et Labora’ (prayer and work).  Usually they live in community (Monasteries) and rarely leave  (Unless to study obviously, as is the case here).  In essence, people come to them, unlike the diocesan priesthood whereby they go to the people.  Obviously, this lifestyle is not for everybody.  I know I couldn't do it.  

Okay, here is the Optimuscommentary from Optimusmastro!  The Religious call is a unique one, then again so is every call.  In the picture with me, is my little confrere Brother Patrick!  (His Community) He studies with me at the Seminary, as we are both seminarians.  It is my first real opportunity to become friends with a monk, and it has done nothing but deepen my own spirituality.  My little ‘bro’ wearing his habit, having to participate with our Diocesan Liturgy of the Hours, spirituality and being separated from his brothers. He is constantly cheerful, open and the funniest guy at the supper table!   Nonetheless, in an urban setting like Montreal, it takes BALLS to wear his habit!  A living testimony to the Gospel amidst a world that needs it.  God bless him! 

Merci pour ton temoignage Frere Patrick!

St Benoit,………………..priez pour nous!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Post Legs Day Adoration,..

A little levity and a ton of humility.  The levity is with regards to the sometimes aggressive tone of my blog posts, while the humility lies in the little winks that God gives us to remind us,..well...not to be stupid!  Case in point, I will always actively train, that is part and parcel of who I am,..still, I think its time that I learn how to better balance my workouts so they don't fall near specific liturgical settings whereby I'm required to kneel,....not so cool..  Case in point training legs the day before Adoration, thereby letting delayed onset muscle soreness completely set in,...Yup!  Not my greatest moment!  The Hypostatic Union is the formula put forth by the Church to articulate Jesus's human and Divine Natures.  He is 100% of both.  To truly appreciate this blog post, I can almost picture Jesus in His full humanity probably wearing the same look on His face when He saw Zaccheus up the tree,.....'Dude,. Really?  Reaaally?' (Then laughing Himself!)

So let us set the scene, early September and the entire seminary is here, before some guys leave for there pastoral assignments.  Our gym is in the basement, and our activities for the day are over.  It was a Wednesday night, and since it was 'leg day,' I made my way downstairs to 'hit the irons!'  Already there were two members of the 'Marie Jeunesse'( here ) doing their respective workouts.  I looked at them and gone was the Faith dimension, in its place was 'I'm gonna show these 'punys' how its done!'  So I decided to go completely 'Old School.'  Squats, (supersets), Hamstring Curls (supersets) Leg extensions (supersets),..Then Bulgarian Split Squats with dumbells, calf machine, abductors, adductors and finally walking lunges. (With dumbells).  Keep in mind, though our gym is modest it does its job, and there is a beautiful Crucifix reminding all of us of our mission,..Our Call to Holiness!  (Unfortunately, the way I was stacking the plates and screaming out the last rep, my case, it should have been more the call to stupidity..)  The Marie Jeunesse guys probably thought I was long overdue for either an exorcism or at the very least, a good session of human development/psychology.  They went to bed,..and I finished my workout,..(thinking I was Ronnie Coleman) headed upstairs to my room to pray Complines and go to bed.

The next day, my legs were starting to stiffen, but that's normal,.. That evening however, wasn't.  As DOMS (Delayed onset muscle soreness) set in,.. and it came time for Adoration of the most Blessed Sacrament!  On our knees we all went, (in my case slowwwly, using a chair...)...'O Salutaris Hostia,...'  Yup,.. then into our chairs for an hour of Adoration.  While at prayer, Jesus reminded me that my ego is my worst enemy, the sin of 'pride.'  On my heart it was a gentle reminder but a reminder nonetheless.  The hour was up, and then it was time for Benediction,..(On our knees) Soooo,..Divine praises, then 'Tantum Ergo,..'  When it was over tears were running down my face.  (I have already experienced certain bliss and ecstasy at Mass...) but this time, the tears were PAAAIN!  Some of the directors thought I was in another ecstasy,..alas not the case,!

Jesus, the Good Shepherd, sometimes has a way of reminding His followers not to be prideful.  He couldn't have thought of a better way.  I mean who was I trying to impress?  The Marie Jeunesse seminarians seemed to care so little about how many 'plates' I could squat,.. Nonetheless, pride, the ultimate tool of the enemy is sometimes the sin with which we struggle the most!  The moral of this post is about pride, the secondary issue is don't train legs when you have Adoration the next night!  Thank you Jesus!  For by your Death and Ressurection, You have set us free, You are the Saviour of the world!

Sacred Heart of Jesus

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Notre Dame/Our Lady,.

We have all heard this hymn 'Ave Maria', a beautiful one indeed, addressed to Our Blessed Mother, the first Christian, the first disciple who points the way to Christ.  Through Her intercession Jesus performed His first miracle, and stood beside Him at the foot of the Cross.  In fact She should be our source of unity among the separated brethren, yet to protestants,.(especially the 'fun' ones,..y'know the rabid anti-Catholic, 'I don't believe in dinosaurs crowd,..) She becomes tantamount to idol worship, and the above mentioned beautiful hymn, sounds like a wiccan incantation towards Gaia.

Now,.Do we post about how we as Catholics do not worship Mary for the 165 357 999th time?  I would love to think that within the ecumenical arena, that we would be able to move past this issue. Guess that's not the case.  First off, to my sincerely misguided Bible believing protestant brethren,..WE DO NOT WORSHIP MARY!!!!!!!  (165 358 000 time)  We honour Mary as Our Mother,.the same way we honour our own mothers,..its that simple.  Notice how I didn't have to go into Latria (Worship) as opposed to dulia?  (Honour)  I can however use the Bible to show the Marian doctrines,..albeit implicitly,..then again there are also other implicit doctrines, of them being the Trinity!...We can begin with Genesis 3:15, (protoevangelium) continue on to Is 7:14, next up we go to Luke 1: 28,..(the Greek here says, Kecharitomene or 'Full of Grace'.... O Protestant, explain how Mary is 'full of Grace' (Her title by the way,..angels are messengers from God..) if the Cross hasn't happened yet?  Btw, its NOT 'highly favoured.'  But nice try though!)  Shall I continue?,..Luke 1:48 (All generations will call me Blessed,..) ..We also have Her only command in John 2: 5,..  More??  Sure!  We have John 19: 26-27,.Woman, behold your son,..(The 'Woman' is used throughout John as a title for the Blessed Mother, the new Eve..It is not used in a derogatory sense, because Jesus, being a good Jewish boy wouldn't disobey the fourth commandment.) Aaaaaaaaand here is a good one, Revelation (Apocalypse) 12, the entire thing,..see if you can now draw the parallel from Genesis 3:15! ,..

Aside from that we also have the Testimony of the Church Fathers, and well, they were the original Bible commentators,.cause well,..some of them wrote and helped canonize the New Testament!  So 'Theotokos', we have St Cyril of Alexandria, St Ireneaus and St John of Damascus to name a few.  For the 'Immaculate Conception' we have St Ephreim, and we have St Augustine!!!  On a side note, we also have your founders,.Luther and Calvin!  Both had great devotion to the Blessed Mother!  As far as intercessary prayers go?  The Old Testament Psalms 103 and 148 come to mind whereby the angels are invoked.  We invoke the saints to pray with us,..not to communicate and bend them to our will, that is forbidden.  In the New Testament, through Christ, we read that we are all members of the Church and death does not separate us.  This was also recognized by the Early Church Fathers, particularly Clement of Alexandria and Cyprian of Carthage.

To conclude this little apologetic on Mary and the Saints,. I would encourage all those seeking Truth with a sincere heart to open yourselves up to the teachings of the early Church Fathers.  If a verse comes down to interpretation, definetly consult those, who in many cases knew the Apostles personally,..or you can continue to quote the Rev. Cletus Archibald Lovejoy III from the 1st reformed pentecostal baptist church in the Ozark mountains, with his 19 PHDs (from non accredited schools.)

Our Lady of Fatima,.....................ora pro nobis!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Our Book First!

As Catholics, we have a treasure and that treasure is God's written Word, the canonized 72 Books of the Holy Scriptures,..The Bible!  Why is it then, that we (Catholics) don't truly appreciate and unlock its treasures by meditating upon Sacred Scripture daily?  Well that is a post for another day,..Right now?  We need an Optimusmastro venting session as only Optimusmastro can do!  (Aaaaaand when I vent,..I can easily make Micheal Voris look like a cuddly baby harp seal...)  One thing about Vatican II, (You hear that whack a doodle sedevacante nutjobs who also believe in aliens, sasquatch and Elvis??!?!?!?) is that it opened us, the Catholic faithful, up to the treasures of the Bible,.so much, that practically the entire canon of the New Testament can be read in 3 yrs,..(provided you attend Mass every Sunday...)

The protestant 'reformation'(okay, deformation,.) of the 16th Century had Martin Luther essentially divorce the Scriptures from its proper place,.the Liturgy.  The Result?  Private interpretation resulting in a constant division and subdivision within Christianity, all claiming that their version of it is true.  Where to begin?  On the issue of the Old Testament, it is important to once again contextualize our thesis.  There was no set defined Old Testament canon until about AD 90 at the Jewish Council of Jamnia.  Before then, the 'educated' language of Palestine was Greek, and they, (Jesus and His contemporaries) used a version of the Scriptures known as the Septuagint.  So the protestant version of the Bible which uses the Hebrew Scriptures, is,..well,.. missing a couple (7) books!

Why the sarcasm?  Why the attitude?,..Well,.because if I answer one more email from our beloved separated brethren on this issue,..I might develop carpel tunnel syndrome, in my brain!  God bless you,..I really mean it.  You guys (Evangelicals and Open minded FundaMENTALists..) are incredibly on fire for Jesus and I truly respect that, but to accuse the Catholic Church of being 'anti' Biblical, or still hiding the Bible, or corrupting it, adding to it, heck,.even painting it green,...the entire point is that it(the Bible, all 72 books,. not your man-made edit job of 66) is our Book!!!!!  It belongs to our Liturgy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Arghhhhhhhhh!,.........Feels good to vent once in a while,...

St Thomas Aquinas,........................ora pro nobis.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Ooooo Michael,.

So I guess this is the post whereby I resume 'pontificating...' especially in light of modernist, left of centre revisionist historians claiming to educate me on Catholic doctrine, dogma and history... Some gurus come from the angry feminist lefties, some come from well meaning fundamentalists, and some from sedevacante bizarro land,.. All one way or another find their way into my email,..through the joys of blogging....I will answer all of you in due time.

So Libya,..and the members of religion of 'peace' storm an embassy and kill diplomats, in the name of 'Allah.'  The crime was a movie put out by a Coptic Christian regarding the 'prophet' Muhammed,....The 'left' was quick to point out that it was extremism.  Well all I have to say is,..

'Dear Left of Centre Media Crackpots

Get your head out of your ass,..



And on,..onto the crux of my real concern,..

This is the blog post where I finally make enemies, the one where my loyal 'traditionalist' bent fan base screams betrayal,...or is it?  Michael Voris,..sigh,.. The last couple of Vortex(s) have me well,..scratching my head just a little.  You see, I find nothing wrong with his content per se,.. but the delivery system is well getting a little old and getting a little angrier... I will invite you to reread the Gospels, and meditate two scenes,.. Jesus meeting Zaccheus, and  Jesus getting His feet annointed by the women of 'sin.'  Next up,.. Reread Acts of the Apostles,..when Paul arrives in Athens, and PROPOSES(Not imposes!!)  the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to a community, a religious pagan homeland.  Freedom,.as in free will, means that we are able to conscienciously decide to follow or reject.  The point is he doesn't level accusations against them, he invites them to a change to heart and direction, a conversion if you will.  (Some follow,.the disciples,..while some reject, the rich young man..)  The crux in all of this, is that despite all the failings/silence of Bishops etc,..The Church still stands,.why?  Simply because it is the Holy Spirit who is in control.  The Church has always moved slowly.  Mr Voris, paraphrase Pope Benedict XVI from Cologne Germany,.. Truth without Love is akin to  clanging symbols, while Love divorced from Truth is completely blind.  We need both.   Does one need to be Catholic to be saved?  The answer is one needs to be in a state of Grace to be saved.  The Catholic way is the Truth established by Jesus Christ, much as it is harder for our non Catholic or Non Christian friends, they can be saved, again, through Jesus Christ, provided they are in invincible ignorance.  (Dear Sede crowd,..Fr Leonard Feeney was excommunicated for advancing a literalistic interpretation of 'Extra Ellesia Nulla Sallus.'  waaaaaay before Pope John 23rd or VII was anywhere near the radar screen,..just sayin'.)  The point in all of this?  Only God can judge the soul....

Sorry for not posting as often, schedule is insane!

Notre Dame de Ville Marie,..............priez pour nous!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Martini, Dolan, and Other Musings...

So what`s my schedule like?  How are you enjoying seminary life and why did you have an ice pack non your knee earlier?  The answers,..busy, loving it and because (and this is specifically directed to my mom who reads `Confessions`) I twisted my knee playing floor hockey with other seminarians!  See Ma,..and you worry about Jiu Jitsu and boxing!!!!!!!  Its hockey with future religious that can be dangerous!  So I began writing this blog entry with an ice pack on my knee and a sad realization that I'm not in my twenties anymore,..

Monday is now part of our collective history, and we Quebecers, (the last province to allow women to vote) elected for the first time a female premier.  The Parti Quebecois is now the government and Pauline Marois is now the premier of `La Belle Province.`  Guess what?  I do not agree with anything she stands for, nevertheless, I will congratulate her on making history.  She has a minority government with 54 seats while the Liberals have 50.  The CAC headed by Francois Legault came in with 19 seats.  Sadly,.the news doesn`t end there as a fanatic attempted an assassination claiming `anglos` won`t stand for her policies.  I have always prided myself on living in a fair and democratic society, that cretin does not represent me.  Continuing,.. Jean Charest lost his seat in Sherbrooke and consequently announced his resignation from politics.  Classy and elegant,..well done Monsieur Charest!

On the international scene,..Cardinal Martini passed away.  Again,.I did not agree with much that he stood for, nevertheless I must admit that he was a brilliant Biblical scholar.  Sometimes we get stuck on his personal opinions,..and then can't appreciate anything else from his works.  As well,..while I once scratched my head over Cardinal Dolan's decisions,..watching him enter the democratic 'house' and beat the 'sh$%' out of them in their own living room was incredibly inspiring!  I am sooooo happy to have been soooo wrong!  Sometimes the Holy Spirit gives us a little wink,..reminded us that it is ultimately God's Church,...God is always in charge!

It is clear that the Church is ressurecting and the John Paul II generation is now officially in control, men inspired by the Holy Spirit to reclaim the Church after a period of nuttyness.  Truly exciting times are ahead!!!!!!!!!!!  God bless!

St Andre Bessette,..(Frere Andre)  ..................priez pour nous!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Worldwind Week,.The New Beginning..

What can I say?   Thank you  so much for all the email, well wishes and prayers of support as my journey to priesthood kicked off last friday August 24th.  From that point, I have lived through an intense week of an opening retreat with my fellow seminarian brothers coming in, as well as with the whole community for another three days,..all spent in silence.  This has been a long time coming, and if I could use one word to describe it in any way, it is pure 'serenity.'  Last year, I studied as an external student, this year, I'm inside, praying the breviery, daily Mass and community life.

The opening camp was a grace.  My Spiritual Director, all 6'3 and 210lbs of big bad Fr Guy Guindon happens to be in charge of all the newbies.  To describe this man, I would say he is holy, completely Eucharistically centred and real!  (He would also be the only priest able to perform an exorcism on Chuck Norris, if Chuck Norris ever became possessed...)  We spent our time at a Sulpician Retreat house in Oka, Quebec, where we prayed together, Mass, a pilgrimidge to the oldest pilgrim site in North America, and fraternized, there was plenty of beer and a swimming pool,.. (for those wondering, there was also a full gym in the rectory, however I don't think I made any friends with the older Sulpician Fathers as I decided to train at 530am in the morning,...hehehehe...)

Monday was the first Conference of the Rector, whereby our mission as a community was put forth,..Jesus in the Scriptures.  To fall in love with Sacred Scripture as God's living Word.  With our theme intact, we went on retreat for 3 days inside the Seminary,..meaning we could not leave the grounds or speak.  We had morning, afternoon and evening prayer, as well as a teaching, Rosary, Adoration and Eucharist!  (Yes,..I still trained everyday at night in the basment gym,..but in!) 

Thursday evening was the community BBQ,.. all provided by the Sulpicians.  Hamburgers, beer and polish sausage! ( Da bearsss, da bullsss,...) where fraternity and laughes were the anthopological accompanyent to a week of prayer and recollection.  I have a had a chance to meet and bond with my brothers, and they are just that, brothers,..we will live in community, pray together, eat together and battle together! 

Confessions will from time to time offer a snapshot of life inside the seminary, the ups, the downs and the in betweens,..  To paraphrase Optimus Prime at the end of every live action Transformers movie,..he gives a little narrative,.. I am Optimusmastro, and I send this message out to any young guy feeling the tug of Jesus on his heart, are not alone, and though I am in discernment, feel free to contact me if you need to talk,...

St Jean Viannay,............................ora pro nobis!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Final Broadcast of Optimusmastro,(Before Seminary..)

After this,..I enter the Seminary and turn into Hot Rodimastro.  Optimus Prime was always the calm, cool, and collected leader,..myself I'm a hot headed guy just trying to do God will in the world. See the parallel,...I 'll be like Hot Rod,..and maybe in a few years Rodimus.  Just joking, way of saying that its time for Optimusmastro to enter the desert.   In this video, I ask for prayers,..and basically let everyone know there will be guest bloggers on 'Confessions,'  Some people you know,..some you might not know,.. All you will get to love. 

Pope St Pius X,......................Ora pro nobis!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Cybertronian Seminarian (Its Official!)

Yup,..I can't keep the smile off my face!  By the Grace of God,. I am now a candidate for priesthood within the Archdiocese of Montreal.  I got the call on the eve of the Feast of the Assumption.  What does that mean?   Well, since by Her Assumption into Heaven, Mary prefigures our own glorified reality,.. I am completely Hers! I also received a T-shirt from the auxiliary Bishop of Montreal,.. Optimus Prime vs Megatron, a pro wrestling style card,..that was the shirt!!! How cool is that??

I got an email from Fr Bertrand Monpetit, an awesome priest, holy and faithful,.. who kind of has a 'Chuck Norris look,' worked as a missionary in South America, and can do a perfect pull- up and chin-up full extension with both supanation and pronation grips!  More to come as I will be releasing a video.  I do however want to thank Jesus, for entrusting me to officially discern as well as my parents, family and friends.  Please continue to pray for me.  I am one of you,..a sinner who is clinging to Jesus.  I find myself within the Gospel as the 'Rich Young Man,' as both sons in the parable of the 'Prodigal Son,' as Zaccheus climbing the sycamore tree, and as Peter who pussyied out when it came time to step up for Jesus,.. We have all denied Christ at one time or another and I'm no different.  I will always 'keep it real' and should the day come, whereby I don't?  Well I train with enough guys to kick my ass back into reality.  The world is in need of Faith, hope and love, if Jesus is indeed calling me,..(and believe I ran for years!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) then maybe its so that I will be able to sit in a confessional, never judge anyone, and say 'welcome home my brother/sister!' 

This coming August 24th, I will enter the seminary, and hopefully 'Confessions' can be a vehicle for what life is like as I journey toward, (God willing) priesthood!  There will be 'guest bloggers' from time to time, but Optimusmastro will always live on,.......  So will the Confessions of a Thirty Something Cybertronian!

St Augustine of Hippo,......................................... Ora Pro Nobis!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Dolan Dilemma,..Part Deux..

I dread writing these posts,..I really do,..because it forces me to choose and thus further divide an already fragile Church in the West concerning issues that really matter..  Case in point,..William Donahue of the Catholic League has now waded into the debate accusing Catholics who are voicing their concern as the 'piety police.'   He recently appeared on Lou Dobbs and well,...see for yourself...

From what I can see on this video, Michael Voris is representing a large number of practicing Catholics who are truly scratching their heads over this issue.  Bill Donahue, using the term, 'Piety Police' is actually the one coming off as harsh and condenscending.  It seems the Cardinal has put himself into a little bit of a political and moral jam.  So,..the establishment 'orthodox' blogs are bending over backwards and putting together articles justifying the Dolan invite to Obama.  Either way,..both now sound like a high end pissing contest,..see for yourself,.. here.

Let me say that I like Cardinal Dolan,.but he, nor myself, nor anyone out there is infallible.  We are allowed to scratch our heads and wonder.  Everyone is entitled to a brainfart now and then, but when you are in the middle of a massive lawsuit which threatens the very freedom of practicing your Faith,.. What would Jesus do?  Did he break bread with criminals?  Absolutely!  However Jesus was also known for rebuffing the Pharisees of His time as well.  Can one take a break from 'yelling' at each other to dine with a president, who in the name of 'women's health' is aborting (that's killing by the way) children day in and day out?  Strangely enough a quote from Chesterton is on my mind,... 'Don't be quick to take down a fence, until you know the reason it was put up.' 

Regardless of what you, me or anybody else may think,..I think we should all remember that it is the Holy Spirit who is in charge.  I will never claim to be wiser, but this issue has weighed heavily on me. 

Sacred Heart of Jesus,...........................Have mercy on us.

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Dolan Dilemma

I want to begin this post by stating a simple fact.  That I,.Optimusmastro do not agree with everything Michael Voris says.  I do however agree with everything the Church teaches.  While I do admire Michael Voris for his courage and conviction, I think there are times when he needs to shut up, and let the Holy Spirit guide the Church through Her purification.  A simple fact is that the Church has always moved slow,.from Nicea to Vatican II,..we, (All of us) are on the Holy Spirit's time, not ours.  So that being said, after much prayer concerning the entire Barrack Obama/Archdiocese of New York/Cardinal Timothy Dolan dinner invite penetrating through the blogopshere, I have decided to break my silence and weigh in on this issue.  Again, sometimes I feel Voris jumps the gun,......Well, this isn't one of those times.  He's hitting 'bang on' on a subject that way too many Catholics are deafeningly silent over,..the reality of abortion.

First off,..the reason that I don't readily blog as soon as a story breaks, is that more often than not,. it will produce a reaction, not necessarily a cohesive reflection.  First off,..I'm reminded of a quote from the great Archbishop Fulton Sheen,.'It is the laity that will save the Church.'  I guess until now, I had never really given much thought to such a weighty prophecy.  The laity are circulating a petition to have Cardinal Dolan rescind the invite.  It seems that Cardinal Dolan has invited the US president to the Al Smith dinner, despite leading a massive lawsuit against the Obama administration regarding the forcing of Catholic institutions to cover insurance for which money will be alloted to abortificients and contraception of the guise of health care..  Where to begin?  It seemed that Bill Clinton was not invited to this dinner in the 1990s by then Cardinal John O'Connor because of his abortion stance.  What does this all mean?  Is it being rigid to think that Cardinal Dolan should rescind his invitation to Obama?  After all Obama is leading a charge specifically directed at the Catholic Church!  One of Cardinal Dolan's lines was 'He's given us a year to figure out how we are gonna violate our consciences.'  The blog of the Archdiocese of New York issued a blanket 'damage control' statement, claiming that this is in no way an endorsement of Obama, but still you have to wonder don't you?  How the government and the Church can co-operate helping out the poor.  Hmmmm,..  At prayer, everytime an issue comes up that requires a compromise with morality, let alone an intrinsic moral evil such as what abortion is, image comes to my mind,.. I see the first Christians being marched into the Coliseum,.. they went freely and willingly(some singing hymns) because they believed in a cause, Jesus and the Ressurection.  I pray to God for the courage and fortitude that should I be called to serve as His priest, I may show leadership and balls in the face of danger or evil.  

Dear Cardinal Dolan,.

Despite me being Canadian, the entire free world has watched you lead the charge against the Obama Administration imposing its rules upon the Church in America with a clear violation of your first amendment rights.  I would like to thank you for this.  Abortion is murder, plain and simple and our society is in the shape its in, because of this demonic issue.  The economic crisis can be traced right back to contraception and abortion, because frankly, there is nobody to replace the next generation.  I'm only stating facts.  I would like to ask you a question, say that instead of Fetuses being murdered, it was Jews or Blacks?  I know this may sound provocative, but your Eminence,. would you freely set aside political differences for a night to rally at a fundraising dinner if the President's health care bill forced Catholic institutions to contribute to killing off Jews and Blacks,...My point is that human life is human life period.  You know that.  I know this is a political minefield,..but sometimes we need to make unpopular decisions, whether in business, with friends or with 'life issues.'  

Please pray on these issues, day you may meet one of these aborted children,..

God Bless

St Jean Viannay,........................ora pro nobis.


Thursday, August 9, 2012

A Chicken Sandwich For Freedom!

Following suit on the whole controversy of different companies and entities coming out for the whole gay agenda,..Starbucks, Cheerios, and DC Comics to name a few.,..See some previous posts.  Well, according to the mainstream 'truth' commission otherwise known as the mass media, if you disagree with these companies coming out 'for' so-called gay marriage then you are an intolerant bigot. Freedom of speech anyone?  What even more interesting is the slew of left leaning 'memes' popping up on Facebook showing all the gay people murdered by hate crimes, and underneath it,..'Enjoy your chicken sandwich.'  The place in question was 'Chick Fil - A.' 

First off,..this entire issue supposedly one of prejudism against people is a misnomer.  Chick Fil A is no more against gays than I am.   What they are doing is publically taking a stand supporting traditional Marriage.  (Marriage btw, stems from the Judeo Christian understanding of one man, one woman.)  The owners who are Christian, do not 'hate' gays anyone than anyone else,.but will declare their actions sinful.  We do not hate people, we hate the sin.  The Scriptures being clear is one thing, but common sense and health factors (tearing being one of them..)  play into the issue.  Someone addicted to cocaine, has a cross to bear and must struggle to deal with this issue, not legalize it to justify his attachment to the vice. 

It seems that through this whole issue,.. Philip Jenkins's position was proved right.  That Catholicism is the last acceptible prejudice.  Being pro-life and pro traditional marriage is tantamount to being a 'fanatic.'  I've included a link below,.. (see here ).  You can check up these statistics for yourself.  So according to the 'left' who are always screaming for 'free speech',. Starbucks, Cheerios and other companies coming out for same sex marriage is okay, but Chick Fil A coming out aginst it is intolerant and don't have a right to an opinion?  ,....Has anyone still asked the question as too why these companies take a stand on socio political issues in the first place,..I find that incredibly weird. 

** Sorry for the lackluster posts lately,.. been extremely busy, next one should be published tomorrow, and here's a hint,..its a letter to Cardinal Timothy Dolan...**

St Edith Stein,...................ora pro nobis

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Relativism or Martyrdom? Up to You..

How is it that I keep finding myself writing mini editorials and reflections especially with regard to our current culture 'shift' that is steadily underway?  The secularist alliance with Islam and the political 'left' have whipped up a subjectivist mentality, and modern man drinks this stuff by the gallon.  We are to tolerate all,..except one thing,..Christianity.  I guess its fitting, because Jesus caused such political unrest...So why now?  Why this utter assault upon anything remotely Christian while everything else is off limits...Why?  Because Christianity, The Catholic Church is the one true Faith, and let's face it, the only obstacle to satan.

Within Salvation history, we know satan has been defeated in Eternity.  The Passion, Death and Ressurection of Jesus redeemed humanity from the clutches of death.  In time, however, satan wishes to take as many souls with him as he can.  His tools of choice?  'Political correctness,' So called 'Feminism' and the 'Social Justice' marxist movement.  Too many Catholics are asleep at the wheel and forget that our Faith calls us to witness to the Truth. Either that, or they have become incredibly secularized to the point that their 'Catholic' identification is more cultural and less of a true relationship with God. 

How did we get to this point?  At one time or another, most of us who have experienced a conversion (ongoing) felt as if we had all the answers!,..Well right now it would seem,..we (or I anyway) are trying to find all the right questions instead.  God creates us in His image, we do not create God in ours.  Socio Political issues (their words..) such as abortion are wrong, not because they go against a discerned Catholic dogma, but because they go against the very Divine Law itself.  (5th Commandment,..'Though Shall Not Kill').   This issue seems to be a no-brainer for the greatest thinkers of our time,..yet we still have the pro-'choice' crowd.  An issue, seeking to murky the waters by aligning it to 'women's rights.'  What if in the name of 'women's rights' we decided that Blacks or Jews can be killed instead of babies?  We need to seriously ponder this reality.  If a society can kill babies, we are capable of any other evil.  As Catholics we cannot be complicit with evil. 

Since birth we are conditioned to put 'man' first and God second.  So is it any wonder why we are now in the State we are in?  The 1960s saw the sexual revolution complete with its demonic agent of birth control.  'Humanae Vitae' was ignored, and behold a shrinking population so bad we won't be able to sustain our retirees in a few years.  I drank the Kool Aid of casual sex as did most of my generation, I am now trying by the grace of God to undo all these habits, and believe me, there are times when storms gather that I need a good jog at 3am,..while clutching my Rosary.  I have already accepted the idea that the next generation will live in a completely different world.  A world whereby the population is overwhelmingly muslim.  This is not a cryptic prediction, but an upcoming reality.  Have we become so desensitized to the point where even within the Ecumenical 'dialogues' that we have with other 'Christian' brethren, we have become afraid to tell them the truth?  My friends, ecumenism is set up to help bring our separated brethren home!  While yes, it must start with coffee and getting to know each other,..but we've had nearly 60 years of that,..we need to take action.  The Catholic Church is not one denomination among many, She is the Church of Christ which subsists in Her!  That is not me,..that is what Vatican II states! 

The danger with any heresy is that it mixes itself up with 'good,' and both plays to our ego and what is conveniant.  The adherents of the so-called 'social jstice crowd fit this bill.  Authentic Catholic social justice has at its heart the dignity of man.  It must start in the womb.  We must be free to love and through our love imitate Jesus by feeding the hungry and clothing the naked.  However when it becomes the primary forced issue, it leaves out the salvific one.  We forget that we are a pilgrim people and that Heaven, communion with God is our true home.  Christianity is not conveniant.  Christ came to die so that man could be redeemed.  We must take up our Cross and follow Him, yes, even if it means to death.  I have included then Cardinal Ratzinger's homily from 2005,. (see here ).  The world is changing,..Islam will dominate, the population will shrink, economies are starting to collapse, abortion is on demand, being pro Traditional Marriage is seen as being 'intolerant.'  As Christians we are called to Love,..we must be tolerant of people, that doesn't mean we must tolerate their ideologies. 

Our Lady of Fatima,.....................ora pro nobis.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Letter to Heaven,..

The blog has been silent the last week,..the reason?  The passing of my Uncle and Godfather,..Zio Sabatino, aka Uncle Sam,.  What can I say about Uncle Sam?  He was truly a remarkable man and the closest to emulate St Francis as one could get.  His love of animals, undeniable.  (Especially for an 'old school' Italian man!) 

I apologize that this blog is taking a personal twist,..but I have not been able to adequetely think or put together any coherance with regards to the sudden passing of my uncle.  My last correspondance with him was two wednesdays ago,.. My words perhaps came off as harsh,..As I made sure he had my number if he couldn't get a hold of my dad.. .Uncle Sam you will be forever  remembered and immortalized through this post, (the reason I'm writing it..) lauched into cyberspace for eternity.  In Heaven, I know there is a bocce game happening, there are ribs on the BBQ,  and perhaps a little Tre Sept card game with St Peter later on,..

I hope that I can be even half the man that you are,..Your witness to love is a hallmark that any person who knew you would seek to learn from.  I can only imagine that as you entered Eternity,..three voices did you hear.  The first, 'Sabateeee!' was Nonna welcoming you,.the second was 'Hey Sam! an all too familiar greeting from Uncle Mario,.. and the third?  'Hey Babes!' (As you reunite with Auntie Jean after 9 years!),..Dad and I raised a glass to you yesterday, today and tomorrow will be the same,..Can't wait to see you again Uncle Sam,.. Miss you..


St Francis of Assisi,............................Ora pro nobis,..

Friday, July 20, 2012

Political Mythology,...

The world seems to be shaping up into a 'left' vs 'right' mentality, all under the guise of dialogue.  This past month, Justice Roberts declared Obamacare 'constituional' and violated the US's very own founding principal of 'religious liberty.' Please remember that I speak as a Canadian, so if I misrepresent anything please contact or correct me...I want to challenge in a pastoral way some views held by the so-called left concerning the Catholic Church, and attempt to show the Catholic position.  Only the Church has the answer because She and She alone is divinely instituted by Christ Himself.  You will not disagree with me, but with Jesus and His Church..

A few years back, I wrote a post on the incompatibility of socialism with Catholicism.  At its very core, socialism denies original sin and sets mankind to save himself.  That does mean I don't have a preferential option for the poor,..absolutely!  But it is freely chosen by me and in accord with Church teaching.  Fr Larry Richards once remarked at a men's conference, 'what is more important, praying or eating?  Praying!   We can forget that the poor, through there suffering are much closer to Jesus than we can be,..Jesus Himself says it in the Sermon on the Mount.  We need to reform institutions to conform with Catholic values.  The Gospel serves as blueprint for a pilgrim people journeying through this world in order to attain Heaven, our true home.  The focal point of the Gospel, That God reconciles the fallen world to Himself in the person of Jesus Christ out of LOVE.  LOVE means a choice,..a willingness to lay down one's life for another.  The emotive 'feelings' is a corporal reaction, not the main point.  Jesus provoked the people of His time and continues to provoke us as a whole, our humanity fallen as it is, seems to have lost its moral compass. 

-  The Church is not 'anti-woman' by being pro-life.and against 'women's ordination.  She understands the sexual dimension within the parameters of God's Divine law,..'Though shall not kill'  Choice begets consequence,..the scene from Young Catholic minute of registering 'shock' after putting ice scream in the microwave and realizing that it melted,..'But I only wanted to see it spin..'  I've known women who have had abortions and they have realized what they did,. it was murder out of conveniance... They feel isolated and empty, and they carry the weight of their 'political choice' around with them the rest of their lives.  Only through Christ and His Mercy can they find redemption... This is the Church's message...

As for the ordination of women, this issue has been infallibly settled by Pope John Paul II.  (see here)  Jesus acted freely by ordaining only men to the priesthood.  The Church has spoken that She has no authority to confer 'ordination' upon women, and furthermore this is contrary to God's plan.  The Church by Her nature mirrors Mary and receives Grace from God,. (Can we not see the image?)  To push this issue, is akin to holding a referendum on whether or not all men should be able to fly on our own,.. Even if we all vote yes, our nature dictates otherwise.

- The Church is not anti-'gay' by opposing so-called homosexual marriage.  The Church recognizes that some people are born with a same sex attraction affliction.  As well the Church recognizes some people born with an alcoholic dependency.. Both are treatable.  The homosexual act is intrinsically disordered, why?, because its act is rooted in selfishness.  Even outside of marriage a straight couple using contraception can still be 'open' to a child.  The homosexual act completely closes that off, and turns 'Love' an eternal giving of oneself' into a taking,..God created sex, it is good!  It is rooted in the very Trinity of God Himself and enables man to participate in the very act of creation,' Making Love'...The Church does not call 'homosexual' those born with this affliction but instead elevates them to live out the Call to holiness, through authentic freedom.  If they fall, they have recourse to the sacrament of Reconciliation.  The same is true for a straight couple.  The danger with sodomy is a muscle issue, it can tear.  Period plain and simple.  The Church is not anti-gay just as She is not anti-alcoholic,..She is pro -people.

This health care bill in the US, will force Catholic institutions into paying for contraception through insurance programs.  Don't worry though, he'll feed the poor,.. We need to recapture our logic goggles and truly see this bill for what it is,..just my two cents.  My friends, we are in a bad way,.. Our population is increasingly getting older, we are not producing children.   Yet our population is growing.... The most common name in the world?  Muhammed.  The Church does not impose rules, She proposes a solution to our fallen condition.  The Gospel is our blueprint, while we, a pilgrim people journey home.  God desires our Salvation but the choice ultimately is ours. 

I have been recently following Raylan Alleman of Fix the Family Citadel Catholic awesome ministry from a guy whose a dad, a real Catholic dad, a man with balls,..meaning you'd show respect if you were dating his daughter!  I am putting a link to his youtube channel,..See here

Our Lady of Akita,...................ora pro nobis!