Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Israel, Palestine and the Vatican Part 3

So we left off last time still swimming in the 'historical context' wading pool before treading the ocean of socio-political firestorms.  Both parties justify religion as the basis for their claim to the land, with both parties laying a legitamite gripe as to why the land should be theirs.  Soooooo,..let's continue on shall we?

So we left off more or less with the Balfour declaration and thus cleared up any propaganda that Israel was only established in the wake of WWII because people felt guilty about the Holocaust.  This myth is widely circulated in leftist circles.  So, now here comes the immigration.  Thousands and thousands of Jews, 'Askanzi' begin to immigrate to Palestine, buying up land and establishing colonies.  This,..the Zionist mentality comes into a full blown confrontation with Arab, yes,..but Muslim nationalism as well.  Again, with Islam, we cannot separate the politics from the religion as this concept is quite alien.  Islam is the political system.  Within the system and stemming from the theological root is the concept of a land bethrowed,..( see here ).  The surrounding Arab countries tend not to view the struggle which was political as just that,. political, instead they see it as an attack upon Islam itself.  Herein lies the problem.

So begins the protests in Jerusalem, with Arab banners reading 'Our country for us' and 'Stop jewish immigration'  as battle cries.  Still in the same year, Muhammed Amin Al-Husayni incited crowds, as well Jews in Galilee were attacked.  This all led to the establishment eventually of Haganah,..a Jewish defense force, a pre cursor if you will, to the IDF.  The next year, saw what were called the Jaffa riots whereby the Jews retreated from Jaffa to Tel Aviv.  Surprisingly, there were not many casualties, yet the British(the mandated authority) were constantly trying to restore order.  Later, that year,..the true tension arrives when politics, unofficially turns religious as Muhammed Amin Al-Husayni becomes the grand mufti of Jerusalem.  The 'Grand Mufti' is seen as the highest level of religious authority within a muslim (sunni) state.  So that being said a little muslim colour is added to the mix, and the next year, Arab leaders informed the Brits,..that they will not accept the Balfour declaration.  So what was proposed in 1917,..was finally rejected 5 years later.....The Brits, because of certain political factors,.namely Arab riots, a change of government in Saudi Arabia,..clarified their position with the Churchill White Paper...(see here )

So what about the Palestinian Christians?  And what happens to the Jews?  Were Arabs kicked out of their houses during the immigration and what about Islam, Apartheid and the UN????  Find out in the next installment!!!

Our Lady of Ville Marie,...............ora pro nobis!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Israel, Palestine and the Vatican Part 2

Okay,.so far we got off to a reasonable start, didn't ruffle too many feathers by only stating some historical/theological contexts, namely the dynamic inter-relationship between the Abrahamic Faiths.  Of course this is but a small bucket of water, in the ocean of a much larger political science domain.  So ,.for today, we are going to skip forward to the Jews already living in diaspora forming a commission calling for the establishment of a Jewish homeland on the geograpical area known as Palestine.  By now, the Jewish people, the Ashkenazi are basically considered Europeans whose religion happens to be Judaism.  On the other hand the Sephardic are the Jews which remained in the Middle East spread throughout Iraq, Iran and yes,.(sorry left leaning pundits,) Palestine!  Here goes....

In 1897,..Theodore Herzl founded the Zionist congress.  It's initial aim was to build a network with the specific aim of establishing and maintaining a Jewish State in the land of Palestine,..  The Arabs, still under Ottoman 'mindset' sought to secularize, if not remake their 'Islamic' face (Turkey) and thus set in 1911, what was called Al-Fayat.  This group, in a nutshell called for greator Arab autonomy within the Ottoman world.

So, comes World War 1,..and several key dates,..the 1915 Hussein-McMahon communique which promises an Arab country, BUT it should be noted,..NEVER mentions the specifics that it would be on the land of Palestine!  Remember that the world is still in a mess after the first world war, so different European countries assume control of certain lands in the Middle East.  France assumes control of Lebanon and Syria while Britian assumes control over the land of Palestine.

On November 2 of 1917,..the British Foreign Secretary, Arthur James Belfour informs Lord Rothschild that his government would oversee the establishment of a Jewish State on the land of Palestine,..(the letter)  ...So conclude part two,..we can dispel the myth that Israel was only created because of the Shoa,..that it had in fact been a work in progress.  The Balfour declaration was way before WWII....Stay tuned for part three...

Our Lady of Ville Marie,..........ora pro nobis

Friday, February 24, 2012

Israel, Palestine and the Vatican, Part 1.

Sometimes I often wonder whether by writing an editorial like this, I will anger people on both sides of this equation.  Well,..essentially that is my point and I really don't care.  I mean, I graduated with a degree in political science after all so why wouldn't I be able to weigh in at least intelligently on such a political hot potato, and why now?  Well,..over the last few days, I've received arguments from both sides, intelligent ones to boot, yet either side seems to be calling out the other ones so-called 'facts.'  As best I can,..I'm gonna try to weigh in on this issue....

Before I do, I think we all need a little primer as to what the tale of the Tape between both of these 'peoples' would read, for that, in brief, for today,..we'll concentrate on history...

The Israeli/Palestinian conflict cannot be understood by the Western mindset without a firm grasp of the other's theology.  In this light, both sides, claim as the source of justification that God gave to them the land.  The Israelis cite the Torah specifically Exodus,..while the Muslims understand this in terms of Dar Al-Harb vs Dar Al-Islam.  Insert into this quagmire, certain groups of Evangelical Christians adhering to dispensationalist theology, (a heresy btw..) which views the return of the Jews to their homeland as a necessary primer to usher in the third coming of Christ.  (I say 'third' because, according to their theology, Jesus will appear in the sky and rapture all true believers,..before he returns as Just Judge..)

The land located in the middle east has a long history and can be argued is one of the oldest of all to be inhabited.  Through settlements, at God's command, the Jewish people at roughly 950 bce (disputed..) established the United kingdom of Israel which later split into North and South,(Judea).  The Romans would later conquer the land in roughly 5-6 Ad,.(this pressupposes the birth of Christ at around 4-3 bce.)  yet although the Romans conquered it, as was their custom, they left it as a province so to speak and it continued to be governed by jewish authorities.  When the Roman, empire became Christian in 313ad, 'Palestine' also became Christian and thus, a center for many monks and religious.  It was during this time, that the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the Nativity and others were being built.

Enter the conquest,..this time, by the muslim army.  Caliph Umar enters Palestine in 638ad and a complete ransack begins.  Sorry, again to the revisionist historians who claim that life under Islamic law was nothing but candy canes, roses, rainbows and leprechauns,..again not quite true.  The time of the Crusades took place and battled for the Holy sites...To read about more of this,....see here.  You might not like Voris style,..but his sources are impeccable! 

That's all for today,..but we need this lense in order to go forward within this analysis.  The 'Religious right' don't accept the fact that we as Catholics must view this as a political matter, not a theological one.  The Catholic Church is the bride of Christ and thus the continuation of Israel as people of God.....Coming soon Part 2,..whereby I will attempt to break down key important dates stemming from the British ruled Palestine to now.....

Our Lady of Ville Marie,...............Ora pro nobis

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Today is Ash Wednesday within the Liturgical calender and is the day which calls to mind our own mortality as well as the start of Lent.  The forty days before Easter.  The parralel if you think about it is quite simple, Jesus fasting in the desert preparing Himself for his mission.  For us as Christians, we prepare to celebrate the most Holy of all Christian feasts,.(Yes, it even trumps Christmas...) the Ressurection of Our Lord!  As with anything in life in order to get to the Glory, we gotta pass through the Cross...

Ash Wednesday, a day of fasting,..should call to mind our eventual death.  The priest upon placing the ashes either on the crown of our heads or directly on our forehead, will say to us that we are dust, and to dust we will return...Death.  The reduction of a composite being into its component parts.  The instant where we will encounter Christ as just judge, and ultimately know our destiny.  While we do trust in the promises of Jesus, there are certainly times when we don't live them (St Matthew 7. 21).  Ultimately we are saved by Grace, but we can and must co-operate.  A good conscience exam, a good confession, and ultimately a kick ass start to Lent!

To conclude, this is the time of year, when we should focus upon our relationship to God. Despite all the evils in the world and all the trials and tribulations, Lent should refocus us directly upon Jesus, who will ultimately refocus us directly upon Heaven,..our true home.  May you experience a Holy Lent.

Sacred Heart of Jesus,..........Have Mercy on us!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Meeting Friends,..

Continuing my theme, and ever since the 'decision' has been taken, I have found it 'fun' when I meet up with old buddies or better still,..women that I've dated.  At first it was a little awkward, but now, well, if I can have a little fun with it and show people at the same time, that not all discerning guys are so rigid that if they bent over, they'd snap in half!  Case in point, this morning I run into a friend that I had not seen in a year, so we exchanged pleasantries and sat for a cup of coffee.  After idle conversation, (why the Habs lost,) he came out with it,...

'So is it true, you're y'know?' .......long pause,.(I had decided I was going to screw with him,...)
Yes,..I've become a vegetarian!  (I slammed my fist on the table and passionately defended animal rights,)  Needless to say, that was not the answer he expected,..After a while I finally opened up and the funny thing is, all he wanted to do was talk about the demonic...

Well,..Whatever gets them closer to the Lord!

God Bless

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

Sunday, February 19, 2012

McFruitloop Files...

Okay so enough people wanted to know who this Fr McFruitloop is and why he figures so much into 'Confessions' kind of like an arch enemy.  So here goes my attempt to make you guys laugh!  Enjoy!

Born Andre Tiffany McFruitloop, he was the only child in a household of girls.  His father, discovered that he really felt more like a woman inside, so he decided to have a sex change and embrace his/her true call to femininity.  His mother gave him the middle name Tiffany so he would not feel left out being the only person with testicules. As a result he called his mom, 'maddy' and his dad, 'dommy.'  This way, everyone was equal!   As a young child, he felt hockey was too competitive and violent so he decided to persue figure skating in the winter and pottery/arts and crafts in the summer.  McFruitloop didn't have many toys either as he was uninterested in GI Joe with kung fu grip, instead following the only 'half' male role model in his house, took active participation in sowing and creating sparkly armbands and colourful fruit fridge magnets. 

McFruitloop was a tender kid who bruised easily, so his figure skating career was cut short.  High School was a little rough as when puberty hit,..he discovered his manhood, but the guidance counselor told him to keep his options 'open' to both men and women.  This was the 1960s btw! McFruitloop while waiting for his mother to come home from working construction was helping his dad bake a cake,..'Dommy, I think I like men, and want to help others discover this awakening,.'  When not become a priest person?  Andre, Vatican II's spirit is running wild,..though the actual documents might be still very patriarchical, chauvisnistic and hierarchical, its the spirit that really counts!  We don't need that silly Pope guy anymore, and Jesus,..well he just loved everybody and equal, some people nowadays even call him 'Sophia.'  Andre decided to mull it over, instead of praying he dropped acid, smoked a 'J' and went to bed.

After meeting with the vocation director at Rainbow Carebear Seminary, Sr. Bruce,..Andre McFruitloop went through five years of nothing, because, well truth didn't exist and he was sooo happy to finally figure it out.  One of his courses though was a pre requisite for graduation in theology.  The course, Advanced Intro to Women's Eco Spirituality And Karl Marx is the solution Theo-1960 was hard.  Students had to dialogue their feelings, learn how to set up dialoging commitees, and focus groups that concentrate on small 'faith sharing' while drawing inspiration from the Buddha.  One day Sr Bruce announced that there was only 3 seminarians left,..they had to kick somebody out for getting caught with Aquinas,..dangerous literature!  Anyway she was wearing her very best polyester pant suit combination in order to muster and conjure up the spirit of Vatican II to propose women's ordination, the Roman hierarchy refused, she shaved her head in protest.

The day came when Andre was to be ordained.  Although an archaic celebration it was needed to maintain a sense of solidarity with the people.  Jesus/Sophia called us to be fishers of 'people' after all!  Bishop Smirk arrived wearing his best neon green chasuble with a blade of wheat and rainbow in the middle!  He even was thoughtful enough to bring other mini chasubles for all the girl alter servers present!  After he laid hands on McFruitloop, Bishop Smirk invited the entire congregation to also lay hands on him,..So they all did!  First came the gay and lesbian alliance, then the eco-spiritual people, then came the women religious of the order of social justice,..absent were any kind of religious advocating a belief in an eternal truth, such as Dominicans, Jesuits and Franciscans...He was dressed in chasuble by his 'moderator' Sr Bruce (she also runs parishes as 'moderator'  whereby all the priest does is consecrate,..but that will change soon when she gets 'ordained'..) ...What a glorious day!  Fr McFruitloop wore the brightest neon green chasuble as well but with a rainbow and bunnies adorning the front! Instead of the laying on of hands by other clergy present, he and his Bishop engaged in a ceremonial patty-cake,...see below..

Fr Andre McFruitloop is now a priest and assigned a parish whereby he 'moderates' in the spirit of Vatican II all liturgical celebrations celebrating and reaffirming our collective 'okayness.'  The alter, now referred to as the 'table' is held on equal esteem with the ambo.  So they should be presented as such in the sanctuary.  Vested in alb and stole, he will only wear his chasuble for special occasions.  He does not own a Cope or a Humeral Veil,...But he will continue to work for a more just Church!  His blessing at the end of liturgy is May God/Goddess, Allah, Buddha, Vishnu, Shiva and Brahma bless you all!  In the name of the creator, the redeemer and the sanctifior! 

And now,.......back to reality!!!!

God Bless, and Happy Sunday!!!! 


Friday, February 17, 2012


There are animals, there are men, and there are Manimals!!  Recently a friend of mine gave a dvd about Tim Staples explaning the Faith.  All I can say is WOW! 'Why be Catholic?'  It isn't necessarily so much about the content which is incredibly Thomistic, but its delivery!  Tim Staples is a former US marine, and Pentecostal youth minister, a big dude with a booming voice chalked full of enthusiasm.  While I do not share his spirituality (charismatic), I can certainly appreciate his enthusiasm! 

As we approach Lent,..I always cringe at the thought of Fr McFruitloop reaffirming our collective 'okayness' during the lenten retreat.  You know the shlock we've had to deal with for the last 50 years or so!  Well,..I'm not saying that we have have to be animalistically violent in presenting our Faith, then again, we don't have to butter it up with whale saving sugaring lovey dovey crap either!  We need an authentic witness through authentic preaching and presentations, voila!  Tim Stapes,..Manimal for the Faith!

 St Pio de Pietrelcina(Padre Pio, also patron saint of italian house fridge magnets ;))........Ora pro nobis!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

St Valentine's Bathroom Break,....

Yesterday came and went, another St Valentine's day and still another cash draw for the flower/Hallmark greeting card industry.  Sorry ladies, I just never bought into this!  I had originally planned to write this post yesterday, but a pastoral instinct kicked in, that maybe it wasn't the right time to bring this stuff up...So we'll do it today! 

St Valentine's Day, a day when girls gush and men spill open their wallets to buy flowers, candy, clothes, jewelry, all sorts of sugar coated crap, (Yup!  I said it!) in the name of love.  Yeah right!  More like in the name of the biggest marketing ploy ever launched upon our collective psyches!  To begin, what the hell does St Valentine have to do with fat little winged babies throwing arrows?  Really?  Reeeeally?  Their not angels,..the Bible shows angels telling people to not be afraid when they manifest themselves!  Don't know about how much fear fat little winged babies with too much rosy makeup would strike in me!  So the marketing execs gets together at corporate headquaters and sitting around a table, brainstorm saying, 'On the feast day of St Valentine, a bishop and martyr,..let's turn it into a syruppy sugar coated cheesefest, complete with a Bonjovi ballad strumming in the backround,..(You know the kind where Ritchie Sambora really strains his voice providing backup lyrics such as 'Whoooaaaa' and 'Yeeaaahh.')  On a side note, there were fourteen Valentines who were martyred throughout Church history!  Which one are we talkin' about? 

                                                  A relic of St Valentine,..isn't it romantic?

Okay ladies, so by now, your saying, yeah but this guy is discerning potential priesthood.  Well, I do have a past and have had relationships.  All I'm sayin' is that perhaps, if we made it a holiday about Agape and not necessarily chocolate and fluff, we could salvage our economy by not running up credit card tabs paying for a make believe holiday!!!!  Seriously,..this post was just meant to make people laugh!  God Bless all married, coupled and single people!

St Valentine (All 14 of you,..) ,...........Ora pro nobis.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Football Heresy

NFL has come and gone, with the Giants champions overs the Patriots.  Yet, within the theological arena especially inside ecumenical circles, the phenomenon of Tim Tebow is still going strong.  Tebow set an incredible Christian witness across North America with his sideline prayer by taking a knee.  Admittedly his act of 'Tebowing' left nobody indifferent and one must wonder out loud if Tebow was a muslim would anyone really care if he prayed to God publically?  Probably not.  Tebow has been a very outspoken critic of abortion and the same sex marriage debate earning the respect and admiration of not only his fellow evangelicals, but also countless numbers of Catholics.  Now that the ecumenical political correctness is over,..let's cut straight to the chase,..Tim Tebow adheres to a heretical sect of Christianity, which views the Catholic Church as counterfit.  Gloves off,..time to respond!

Bob Tebow, Tim's dad, runs a ministry in the Philippines which seeks to 'evangelize' Catholics.  See here.    Now, while it is true that some Catholics are 'cultural' and do need to meet Jesus,..I firmly believe that it is high time we step up and meet the challenge of this non sense.  Evangelicals are cute, they really are, they do an awful lot of good!  However we need to start evangelizing them!!! Show them the fullness of Christianity in all its glory, the contemplative, the charismatic, we have it all!! All rooted in the most Holy Eucharist,.the source and summit of the Christian life!  We as Catholics need to head to the bible belt in deep south USA, bring these souls home to the Eucharist, and then using their zeal,..confront the secular and muslim world! 

Next time we meet an evangelical/Fundamentalist/whatever name,..drop a bomb,..As in 'Dude,.sola scriptura isn't even in the Bible bro!,..The first 350 years of Christianity existed without a set in stone New Testament, do you know these 27 books are inspired?  Did ya get a warm fuzzy feeling?,..Cause y'know Joe Smith got one too when he walked into the woods and found the Book of Mormon,..right?'   Did ya know Luther and Calvin were both Catholic priests and venerated the Blessed Mother?  They even still venerated Her after they schismed off!  Did ya know your 'Old Testament' canon was formulated by a Jewish council in Jamnia in AD 90?  That's why the deuterocanonicals are missing!'

Am I being harsh?  maybe, but sometimes a tough love approach has to happen.  These are good people who handicap their intelligence by saying stupid things!  Peter Ruckman?  C'mon!!  He was eaten alive by Karl Keating and yet, the fundamentalist Church where the debate took place actually posted it on Youtube!  Dr Jack and Rexella,..well God bless them,.they're,..well,..nice.  Kirk Cameron,.dude seriously?  I mean seriously?,..You want to debate the existence of God with your banana?,..Here try Bertrand Russell vs Fr Copleston SJ,.See here.  

So Tim Tebow, Bob Tebow, Shawn Michaels, the Baldwin brothers, all you well meaning evangelical pastors, leaders, missionaries.  As Catholics we have it all!  There is a 'fit' for all your spirituality,..time to stop eating baby pablum and bite into a theological filet mignon!  Are there bad examples?  Yes, the Church is not a hotel for saints, is a hospital for sinners!  For every scandal, there is still a Mother Teresa!  For all the corruption, there is still a Blessed John Paul the Great,..and for every well meaning believer, there is still Jesus Christ, substantially present in the most Holy Eucharist!  Come Home!

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

Friday, February 10, 2012

Optimusmastro,..Cookbook? Huh?

I've mentioned several times that since the 'decision' has been taken, way too many cool things have been happening, that I really just don't have time to blog or write about them all.  While this blog, is in many ways more theologically oriented, it doesn't mean that I don't have any other interests!  For those of you that have been following me, I have interests as you know, in MMA, Weight training and of course Transformers!  Although the Old Testament describes God, as a jealous God,..Our Lord has nothing to worry about as my interests only reflect diverse aspects of my personality.  In spiritual direction, I was told that Jesus will take all these qualities and mold them into a more Christianized version of their already existing attributes!  Picture it,..perhaps I will have a stole (God willing) with autobot logos on it, while having trained future priests and seminarians into little warriors to prepare for our battle or martyrdom!  (Please understand, that was a joke!) 

Well,.aside from those interests, I have another one, that I've kept hidden, here goes!  My name is Marco and I love cooking!  A few days ago I watched the Superbowl with my friend Peter and his wife Luisa, and we decided to make a Spaghetti ala Carbonara!  He filmed some of it on youtube and well, (warning:  In one of the parts, Peter breaks a glass and swears audibly!)  let's just say that not a lot of people saw it but those that did sent emails asking me to put up some recipes!  Optimusmastro Carbonara Part 1 .  So waddaya think?  I've definetely got a few tricks up my sleeve especially with regards to cooking.  I will be putting up more videos in the future, especially a roast of beef, of porc, some more pasta dishes and of course Pate Chinois!  (To my American readership, you guys call it Shepherd's Pie!)  Note:  Although I'm a fitness trainer all dishes are high in calories, if I'm gonna cook then I'm gonna cook! 

One thing throughout this discernement that I'm learning is that Jesus doesn't take away your sense of humour, or your quirks,..but He does purify them.  Remember that I'm still a man and thus need to emote at times especially with regard to long days filled with academics, prayer, jiu-jitsu and DA GYM!  If you guys want a recipe send me an email!  To the guy who asked me why I not audition for 'Hell's Kitchen' with Gordon Ramsey?,..Well, I have a teeny little bit of a temper,..and let's just say that that would be the episode where Fox Network garnered the biggest ratings!  The reason is simple.  I have a huge problem with anyone spitting out food especially when there are people who have nothing to eat!  My parents, and I credit them with this taught me to respect and remember those less fortunate, so ethically I'm completely against trivializing an entire meal because 'it isn't seasoned properly!!!' (his voice)  Secondly, anyone who knows me, knows that Ramsey's world would be flipped upside down after he yelled at me , not in a constructive manner but in his condescending manner,..A guillotine front face choke and he'd be sleeping nicely in under two mins,..

We all need hobbies, whether our vocation is to marriage or the consecrated life.  A healthy balance helps us with our own psychological well-being and enables to recharge for the battles that lay ahead.  Whether its the Gym (woohoo!) or video games, (nerd!) or even cooking, as long as it is something that can lead us into a better frame of mind.  Jesus used to retire to the desert,..sometimes those little pleasures can act as our own deserts!  By the way,..Epic Meal Time, those dudes out of Montreal basterdizing food,..1.  Yes, we all laugh, but too many people go to bed hungry,.something to think about,..and 2.   There is only ONE muscles glasses, and he's the dude typing this,..Challenge issued bro, anytime anywhere!  ;)

St Francis of Assisi,........ora pro nobis!



Wednesday, February 8, 2012

St Francis in the Foodcourt

A few days ago I met a friend of mine in the local bookstore downtown, Chapters.  Needless to say, I hadn't seen this guy in a while so we decided to have lunch inside a foodcourt.  Of course, I'm not the biggest fan of foodcourts as I can rarely find anything suitable for me to eat, my options are quite limited, McDonalds(pigeon McNuggets?  Don't think so!), Subway(microwaved grilled chickenoid sandwich?  Sorry Jared, FAIL!) and of course, the standard Chinese Tiki Ming, (765 000 calories per bite?  I'll pass!)  Soooo,. I finally settled on a chopped salad from a local sandwich place, and I found a Jugo Juice, so I ordered 32grams of protein mixed with water!  (Hey the protein was flavoured, okay? ) 

After ordering our food, we made our way over to a table, and immediately I dove in!  My friend, Greek Orthodox and not particularly religious, shocked me when he made the sign of the cross!  I was awestruck, and to be honest, humbled!  Here I was this pseudo Catholic apologist/fitness trainer potentially discerning priesthood gorging myself at a trough and my buddy, a regular married dude just going about his day, yet taking time to give thanks!  Needless to say, my friend reminded me of St Francis of Assisi,..'Go to the whole world and preach the Gospel, if necessary use words.'  Wow!  Talk about a teaching moment!  Sometimes its the little things that flicker a lightswitch in our brain.  His one act probably was seen by several people, while my apologetical headknowledge meant nothing...Not ashamed to say, I was schooled!

After lunch, I couldn't resist,..'Dude, was cool to see you blessing yourself before you eat.'  His response was cryptic and chilling,..'Bro, we should all start, cause if not our grandkids will end up praying anyway bro,..but towards Mecca.'  

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

Monday, February 6, 2012

The Mass Media and 1984

No, I'm not speaking about their technological acumen, or state of the art production values...I'm speaking about how the media manipulates the masses in order to sway public opinion.  George Orwell's 1984 easily comes to mind.  Yup,..Remember George W.  Bush is baaaaad,.but Barack Hussain, despite being the head cheerleader for the pro-choice movement is gooood.  Imagine a hypnotist swinging a pendulum whilst repeating that mantra....So what do we do?  Well, whether it is reporting truths on the 'religion of peace' or exposing the population control/abortion agenda,..I, Optimusmastro will try my best to bring some news that I feel warrants some attention! 

Case in point,..the 'Occupy' crowd!  You know, the collection of misfits, hippies and socialists already exposed by Steven Crowder but not by the liberal leftist elitist crowd of so-called 'social justice' tree huggers who are incredibly pro choice, but still at the same time are against killing and eating animals,(because,.y'know that makes sense, right? (sarcasm..)  They also generally have never worked a day in their lives, with the exception of a few union reps attempting to strong arm everything,... Well,..a few days back,.they really went a little stupid,..These communists decided to throw condoms at Catholic School girls during a pro-life rally!!!  See,.here.  Now,..isn't that worth condemning?  Hey you liberal, anti-Catholic, .(especially with the health care issue,.) marxist, revisionist historians,..thank God, they didn't throw condoms at the 'religion of peace' which seems to be the only one that Barrack Hussain isn't targeting!  (scratching forehead...)  There would have been riots in the streets, and the usual media horsecrap of 'well its a minority and uhh, uhh,..duhhh,..we have to differentiate because its a tribal cultural,..blahh, blah, blaaaaaah.' 

Bottom line,..we live in a tolerant world which tolerates everything except Catholicism, and guess what?  The media, with the exception of Zenit, EWTN and RealCatholicTV  aren't gonna report anything.  Just think back to Morgan Freeman (the actor) on CNN calling people who were against Obama, rascist!  All this while the head of the Republicans at the time was Michael Steele!!!!  George Orwell would have had a field day!  

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

Friday, February 3, 2012

Catholic Quick Small Arms Defense,..

Speaking from experience, today's highly competitive marketplace requires fast paced answers to even complex questions. It would seem that our 'me' only society rooted in selfishness and instant gratification has also found its way into ecumenical and interfaith dialogue. That's right! You heard me correctly,.as an amateur Catholic apologist I've found myself in situations whereby I was called upon to give soundbite answers to rather complex formulas. (Imagine yourself explaining the Trinity to a Jehovah's Witness in under two minutes!!!) So,..That being said, I've decided to compile a relatively short list of apologetical material hopefully easy to understand, which could assist the Catholic in explaining his/her Faith. I am at once a personal trainer, pro wrestling fan , and transformers enthusiast so that being said, I will draw references from them and hopefully you will enjoy!

It's a hot summer day, and your entire family has just gotten together for a Barbeque. You favorite uncle has dropped by with his new girlfriend and you've noticed that he has begun to proselytize! Have you been saved? Born Again? As a Faithful Catholic, step one before engaging is praying to the Holy Spirit for guidance,..and here he comes!!!!


Obj 1. 'I used to be Catholic, but then I found Jesus. I don't need a pope.'

Ans: 'Praise be to God! I am so happy to hear that uncle x! But didn't Jesus Christ found the Papacy? (Matt 16:18, Jn 21: 15-17) Surely he must have intended something,..because if not he would not have changed Simon's name to Peter, or given him keys o bind and loose, as in Isaiah.

Obj 2. 'What gives the right to a priest to forgive sins? Confession to a priest!? Only God can do that!'

Ans: 'You're absolutely right! Only God can forgive sins, but he does it through his ministerial priests.
(Jn 20:23) Is it not safe to assume that the Apostles are not mindreaders? '

Obj 3. 'What's with all this Mary stuff? She can't save you! Only Jesus can!

Ans: 'Once again, your bang on! Only Jesus can save you! But as far as honoring Mary,..what does it say about all generations called her blessed? (Luke 1: 41-43) Even the Marian dogmas can be deduced from scripture. The Immaculate Conception for instance comes right from the opening Chapter of Luke. (Luke 1: 28) I'm sorry but your protestant bible incorrectly translates 'kecharitomene' from the greek into 'highly favored.' Not so! She is full of grace! The Cross happens at the end of the Gospel,.so my question to you, is how could she be full of Grace, if the passion hadn't occured yet?

**Romans 3: 23 means all capable of sin, the literalistic logic, that would include infants, the senile, the mentally challenged, which we know not to be the case. Mary was spared from original sin, not by her own merit, but by God.

'So uncle X, I'm really happy that you've decided to commit your life to Christ. Clearly His Grace has been working. I will, however pray that you return to the fullness of the Faith, a Faith which obviously you never knew! To conclude, remember that the Bible comes to us through the Church. The New Testament books which we know today were chosen under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit as how they best fit into Liturgy. Its not the Bible and me theory, can't be! Look at the 27 000 protestant denominations always dividing.' At this point,..uncle X will defer and move on to another topic, yet seeds of evangelization have been planted.

The next day, you wake up, 4:45am, breakfast, 16 eggwhites, 1 piece of brown toast and by 5:30am, you're off to the gym. Its a good day,.we are doing P90x chest, shoulders and triceps. An old friend just joined and you see that he too has changed. His morals are concrete and he invites you to read the Qur'an,.to find inner peace the way he did. Once again, a silent prayer to the Holy Spirit and here we go!!!! Ding!

Round 2. ISLAM.

Obj. 1. 'As Christians, you can't explain the Trinity, it is illogical,.how can three be one? '

Ans. 'Dude, the Trinity of God is not thought of the way Devastator from the Decepticons is. It is not three gods forming one superGod. It is a relationship. God is one because truth is one. God is Love,.do you agree? (yes) So that being said, Love exists as the Lover, Beloved and Love between. Why because God has no potency.

Obj. 2. 'Allah is transcendant and cannot be explained. You as Christians confuse the message of the prophets. The Qur'an is the final revelation of God! There are no contradictions unlike the Bible!'

Ans. Really? Do you agree that God is absolute Truth? (yes). Therefore the Qur'an being the revelation of God must be absolute Truth? (yes) That makes the Qur'an eternal truth,..correct? Okay, then a few questions must arise,..Sura 1 begins with,..'In the name of Allah, the compassionate, the merciful...' Do we not see the problem? If the Qur'an is eternal,.then is God eternally compassionate? In the silences of eternity before creation, who is God speaking to? If He is eternally compassionate, would he not need creation to sustain that particular attribute? Stemming from that point, how can God change his mind,.if He is eternal truth? Are Jews, Christians, Sabians saved? (Sura 5: 69) or are they damned? (Sura 98: 6)

The Bible is God's love story to mankind,.not a collection of verbatim literature as the Qur'an claims to be. '

Obj. 3. 'Jesus was only a prophet!'

Ans. By this time, tensions are running high,..'Look dude,.believe what you want, Jesus proposes never imposes, but that fact remains, that Jesus died and rose again. The tomb is empty! The very name 'Jesus' means God saves. His action, his WORD! Even the muslims acknowledge this,.(though they greatly misunderstand it!) Think about from the testimony of history. How many martyrs would willingly go to their death to sustain a fabrication!
(By this time, our friend has been rocked and will no doubt think about it for the rest of the day!)

Obviously these are two most likely scenerios we encounter as Catholics, whether it be in the metro (subway)or in the public square.   Myself,.I was a student of Religious studies and political science back in university, so I am quite familiar with the Qur'an and Bible.  At times we run into Mormons,..and a separate series is currently in the works regarding this unique movement.  For the modernists, and so-called progressive 'catholiks,'  usually an outside crescent kick to the side of the head will jog their brain back into position!  (ha!)  Seriously, this is usually where we have to establish universal Truths.  
                            (The Scapular,...Catholic dogtags!)

These short little skits are intended to help stem the attack of the non-catholic, especially two that will appear often. Just like in life where our body demands a physical workout, we need to engage in a Spiritual workout. Mine includes Mass, the Rosary, Daily Office and Lectio Divina. Keep the Faith! Finally if don't know the answer to a particular objection, say so! There is no shame in saying that you need to look it up for yourself. It not only shows humility but also a chance to satisfy your own human reason.

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

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Process of Transformation,..'LET's Get it ON!!!

This is it!  Today is the day that I will meet with the vocations director for the english side of the diocese in Montreal.  The running away is over, the decision has been taken...Its now or never!  This is one of those blog  entries whereby I will need to solicit prayers.  For the last year, I followed the advice of my parish priest (Btw, awesome holy priest!  Word up Father Martineau!!!) and began studying as an external student.   During this time,.I began looking into the Spirituality of St John Chysostom and began cleaning up the mess that was my interior life, less Charlie Sheen, more Francis of Assisi...(For this I give props to Father Steven Grunow, the number two man at 'Word on Fire' ministries.)  Next up, through the advice of one of my best friends I began to pray the breviary,..Those psalms can act like spiritual supplements,.lke a faith based protein shake!  (That piece of advice came from Father Greg Cizcek)  Then came the ultimate gift the Holy Spirit gave me, awesome Spiritual director (Shout out to Fr Guy Guindon PSS,..) who comes from my world,.the gym!  He has experience in Shotokan Karate, and also is good friends with George St Pierre.  (St Pierre and I train at the same Jiu Jitsu School under the same coach Bruno Fernandes,..Gracie Barra.)  So how much more evidence do I need?

Well,..there is of course my secular friends who still don't quite understand this path but support me nonetheless!  My family, who thought I was called to priesthood as a kid,.(I probably was!  I just ran in the other direction as fast as I could!  'Probably', because ultimately the seminary is the house of discernment)  My facebook friends, awesome people who I met online, and have actually developed friendships with, real ones!  (Generation Benedict!!  This past summer I met Nick, Jason and Christina in Florida).  The women in my life,.my ex girlfriend, who saw me transform, twist and turn, becoming more 'rigid' and disturbed at all liturgical nonsense and at life in general, yet stayed with me, through all of it before I finally fell into a depression.  The bloggers out there, whom I eagerly await their posts,..we shared, vented and laughed at our silliness,..(Especially Button, Footer, Teresa and Heresy Hunter..)

To any guy out there being called, know the deal.  You'll run, He'll let you experience all there is to experience.  You'll never be fulfilled whatever job you do,.you'll try relationships, new hobbies,..etc.  Ultimately God knows where you will be completely happy.  It sucks,.it really does, especially when all you do is wonder why everyone around you is happy and you are not.  

My path back to the Church,.started with the priest in the Diocesan bookroom, and now I meet with the friggin' vocations director!  God has an awesome sense of humour,..He ordained a new priest last week, Fr Jason Piper, whose last quote to me was 'Like Nike,..Just do it!'   I prefer 'Big' John McCarthy, 'Let's get it on!!!!!'   My favorite though is St Faustina,...Jesus I trust in You!

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