Violent and Disrespectful Protesters

Violent and Disrespectful Protesters

First, let us be clear that the First Amendment of free speech applies to all Americans. All Americans have the right to voice truth, their opinions, their preferences and even their lies and deceit.

Unfortunately, there is a group called liberals or progressives that do not believe in the First Amendment as a right for all Americans. They speak of tolerance, but they only call others to be tolerant while they tote their own intolerance as righteous. If they were only intolerant, that would be one thing, but they are also violent and do things to deprive or interrupt other’s right to free speech.

The fact is they are acting with anything but righteousness.

They are acting from the point of greed and selfishness as they are part of a very unhealthy and dysfunctional relationship with the government.

A large part of these people are on the take from the government. They receive most of the benefits for free from the government that the rest of us have to work hard for. Working is a good and something that God calls us to. Scriptures says a lot on labor. It says by the sweet of your brow shall you earn your bread, by the work of your hands shall you eat, let those who do not work, not eat and that a man who does not provide for himself and his family is useless. This names but a few things scripture says on the importance and responsibility to work.

Scripture also speaks of helping the poor, the widow, the orphan and the disabled, but it does so from the perspective of charity, not government redistribution of wealth. It is the duty of all to help others in need, true enough. We are called to do so as individuals, to make a free and selfless sacrifice of our goods we have earned in the form of charity to help others.

We must further say that just because others are in need, does not mean that we have to help them. Jesus speaks of the five wise virgins who brought enough oil and the five foolish who did not. The five wise did not share their oil, as it would not then provide enough for their own needs. Withholding the oil is not a form of greed and these five wise virgins went into the wedding feast while the five foolish did not.

Scripture calls us to work and provide for ourselves to the extent that we are able. Only to the extent that we are not able to provide for ourselves are we to depend on the charity of others. No one has a responsibility to provide to others what they are or should be able to provide for themselves. Neglect, laziness, oversight and other excuses are no excuse.

We look at what we have today. People simply want what others have worked hard for. They vote and do violence as a way to force the government to act as their own personal thug to go to others and take what they possess under threat of prison or other harm and give to them. The politicians want their power and money and so they give the people what they want, even though they do not have the Constitutional right to do so. The people need the government to steal for them and the government needs the people to vote for them. This is an unhealthily and dysfunctional relationship.

That is why our founding fathers had the foresight to limit the power of the Federal Government with enumerated rights and leaving all other rights to the sates (10th Amendments). At the local level, people have more of a say in their lives. They do not have people form other states telling them what and how to do things. Each state is free to do things their own way according to their own needs. The needs and circumstances in one state are not the same as in another state and so solutions will be different. The Federal one size fits all law making process is unrealistic and harmful. That is why the Church teaches subsidiarity, do things at the lowest and most local level possible.

These liberals and progressives or whatever name they want to call themselves have no respect or love for mankind. They put forth their selfish motivated ideas as being loving and compassionate, but they are not. They are self serving. Their unreasonable, violent and disrespectful approach to getting their way says it all.

We do not see the conservative side resorting to the liberal tactics. We remain respectful and patient as we strive to work within the system to bring about change. We silence no one. We threaten no one. This is the Christian and loving way.

The conservative way is about being self motivated as God calls us to be. Each having the right to strive and to achieve according to their efforts and good choices. Some will be really good at this, others will not. And that is OK. I know for myself, that I begrudge no man his riches that he has earned legally. They are his and no one has a RIGHT to them. That is why there is a Commandment that says “Thou shalt not steal.” We do not have a right to other people’s goods and so we cannot take them either by our own hand or by the hand of the government or the IRS.

We note further that as this great country has gotten rich, it has not gotten selfish, but more generous. When something bad happens around the world, we are always the first to step up and help. We do more charity work than any other country, perhaps most countries combined. We have one of the lowest poverty rates in the world. Why? Because we want and allow people to succeed.

It has only been since governmental interference with the New Deal, other welfare programs and governmental regulations that we have declined as a country. The number of poor has increased. The number of broken families has increased. Jobs have been shipped over seas. Businesses have been forced to downsize and automate. All this has been due to the selfish, unhealthy and dysfunctional relationship between government and people.

Those who are part of this liberal approach and mentality must resort to their violence and disrespect, as it is the last resort of the desperate. They are wrong, they are destroying this great nation and they know it. Their selfishness and greed prevents them from acknowledging and accepting it though. They must use violence and disrespect to silence the conservative as it hurts too much for them to hear the truth. Hearing the truth means they will have to change and take responsibility for their own lives and to stop blaming others for their own bad decisions to be laze, greedy and selfish.

 

P.S. I have to say that the conservatives do not have everything right either. But they are a whole lot closer to the biblical and Christian understanding of what is right, moral and just.

Posted in Abortion, Contraception & Sexuality, Blessed John XXIII, Catholic Church, Theology, Morality, Government, Guns & Self Defense, News & Articles, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

New home/cell/cave for the Hermit

New home/cell/cave for the Hermit

I come to you with some urgency. Some may know that I am building a smaller home for my life as a consecrated Diocesan Hermit. My current house is just way too big and that just brings added costs to maintain. I will sell off the house that is a manufactured home that can be placed back on wheels and moved elsewhere. I will then build in the current walk out basement. When I am finished, I will have a third of the living space then I do now. It is my hope to begin this project yet this fall (2016).

I have saved some funds for this project and the sale of the house will also raise some funds, but I am still finding it necessary to raise part of the funds from kindhearted people like you.

With this in mind, I need to raise $25,000. I have over 2000 subscribers to this blog. I know the economy is not great, but I am hoping that 50 people would be able to donate $500 each. Those who contribute the $500 or more will be added to the Founding Benefactors, the perpetual Saintly Acres Prayer Association and (when you pass unto eternal life) the perpetual Purgatory Society. The regular donation for this is $1100. For those who donate $100 or more, I will add your name to the Saintly Acres Prayer Association for 5 years rather than the usual one year.

Please remember that all donations are tax deductible. Saintly Acres is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3).

To contribute, please click here. Any amount is appreciated.

Thank you and know that I am praying for all of you.

God Bless,

Fr. Jeffrey Robideau

Posted in Abortion, Contraception & Sexuality, Blessed John XXIII, Catholic Church, Theology, Morality, Government, Guns & Self Defense, News & Articles, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Purgatory Society

Hello Readers,

I want to just drop a note here to let everyone know that Saintly Acres Hermitage is now offering you the opportunity to enroll your loved ones in our Purgatory Society.

What is a Purgatory Society? Some also call it a Memorial Society. We pray for our loved ones all the time. Sometimes we ask others to pray for them like at the anniversary of their death. At times we ask our parish to pray for them by having a Mass said for them. The Purgatory Society is another way to have prayers said for your loved one, this time by a hermit.

By enrolling someone in the Purgatory Society, you are asking me to do three things. 1 – I will include them in my daily intercessions. 2 – I will include them in the memento of the Mass. And 3 – I will offer the First Saturday Mass for them each month. In addition to these 3 things, I will also send you a certificate of enrollment and their name will be placed on a plaque in my private chapel where I say Mass and prayers.

As Catholics, we have a long standing history of praying for our departed loved ones. I hope you will want to support my religious life as a hermit by enrolling your loved ones in the Purgatory Society of Saintly Acres.

To enroll or for more information, please go to:

http://getholy.com/Get_Holy/SA_Purgatory.html

Thank you and God Bless

Fr. Robideau

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Are We on the Same Page?

Are We on the Same Page?

Let me get this right – I just want to make sure we are all on the same page now.

When it comes to sodomites, people who do disgusting, terrible evil and sinful things that are contrary to the will of God and Natural Law, to this the Pope says, “Who am I to judge?”

BUT

When it comes to people who want to fulfill the good, moral and God given right to defend our boarders in order to protect the safety and well being of the American people, to this the Pope says, “They are not Christian!”

???????????… Maybe I am just using the wrong playbook or something?

Does the Church teach that the STATE has not only the right, but the duty, the obligation to protect the boarders of their nation? YES!

Does this include the right to control who may enter and to expel those who are not welcome or who come illegally? YES!

Does the Church teach that the STATE has the right and obligation to protect the citizens and civil peace? YES!

Does this include the right to fine, restrict, monitor, imprison and kill the offender? YES!

Does the Church teach that one MUST obey a just civil law? YES!

Does the Church teach that we must welcome and care for the stranger? YES!

If you are concerned about caring for the stranger, that only pertains to the innocent. When a visitor or immigrant (a stranger) comes to our country, respecting our laws and customs, then yes we show them our kindness and generosity by welcoming them and caring for them as needed. When they are illegal, they have shown us disrespect and we owe them only the basics of human respect until we expel them from our country.

The basics of human respect include: food, water, shelter, medical care, clothing and only enough comfort so as to not be cruel.

Does the Church teach the importance and the dignity of an intact family? YES!

If you are concerned about breaking up families by expelling the illegal immigrant, then you need to consider this first. – We separate families all the time when we imprison people. Who do we imprison? The guilty, those who have broken our laws. They broke the law, they put them selves in prison, they are responsible for breaking up their families, not the law. We say the same thing about sinners, in that we say God does not send you to hell, you send yourself there by your actions (sin). The illegal immigrant brought this problem on themselves and their families.

If you are concerned that our laws are to strict and unjust, then you need to consider that no other country is as welcoming as the United States. You cannot say that the laws are unjust and so do not need to be followed. I am not saying that the laws are perfect, but they do not deserve to be defied.

We love the immigrant and no other nation has ever built more bridges to embrace the immigrant than the United States.

At the same time, we are not a bunch of chumps who are willing to be walked all over and be taken advantage of. We still have the right and obligation to protect our boarders and our citizens who’s rights must be respected before that of the immigrant.

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The Protestant Heresy; Catholics Please Come Home

The Protestant Heresy; Catholics Please Come Home

Dear Protestants: Before you read this article, please note that it sounds harsh. OK, I agree that it is harsh. But know that I love you as fellow people in search of God and of truth. I hold no animosity toward you. I accept you as friends, and I believe that you are good and well intentioned. I also have no problem working with you in worldly affairs where our religious differences do not conflict with each other.  Where they do conflict, I still love you and desire to work with you as we strive to make the world a better place. What I write here is strictly from a Catholic perspective based solely on that faith.

We all like to think that believing in the Name of Jesus, believing in the power of Jesus, believing in the Love of Jesus, believing in the salvation that Jesus won means that one is a Christian. But to believe in these things is not the same as believing in the person of Jesus, who He is, what He taught, and what He did. That is to believe in the FULLNESS of Christ.

Protestantism neglects aspects of Jesus. They do not believe in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church as established by Jesus as the only means to salvation (there is no salvation outside the Church). They do not believe in transubstantiation and that our Lord is really, truly, substantially present, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Holy Eucharist, just as Jesus said. They do not believe in Confession as a sacrament that one must receive from a priest. They do not believe in praying to Mary as the great intercessor. They do not believe in the Pope as the Vicar of Christ. Their bibles have eliminated whole books and parts of books in Sacred Scripture. Depending on the denomination, there will be various other differences.  Yet these are all part of Who Jesus is, what He taught and what he did.

For this reason Protestantism is a heresy. They do not teach truth in its fullness and even teach error and lies about Christ. In spite of this fact, the Church does all She can to try to reach out to these lost souls by extending the grace She receives to them. All grace comes through the Church and our prayers apply that grace to ourselves, our loved ones, family and friends, and to the world, including people of other religions, governments, world events and so forth. We even extend the sacrament of baptism to them so that they at lest have the opportunity for the grace to come fully into the family of God.

And so many believe that by simply saying they know Christ, love Christ and turn their life over to Christ is enough. But are they really turning their lives over to Him? Some go as far as to say, “Once saved, always saved,” though neither Christ nor the Scriptures say that.

I watched a movie last night. It was produced by Protestants and it was good over all so long as you view it from the Catholic perspective. Protestants do have some truth, by extension that they took it from the Catholic Church when their forefathers in faith left the Church in a schism. So, to the extent that the movie portrayed truth, it was good. One point was clearly Protestant heresy though. One of the characters (the antagonist in the movie who openly hated God) was actively dying, only seconds left to live. The Protestant minister was leaning over the man and asked him to accept God and turn everything over to Him. The man did and so the impression left was that his soul was saved. We do not know if he was baptized, which is necessary for salvation. But leave that aside for now.

There was no repentance of sin, only accept God and turn everything over to Him. That is part of the heresy of much of Protestantism that speaks of “Faith without works” when Scripture says that faith without works is dead. They believe that God did all the work on the Cross for salvation and that all we have to do is “accept it.” No further “work” is necessary. And if you do bad things, just apologize straight to God and all is well. I say “bad things” because I am not sure that they believe in sin as a separation from God in the Catholic sense of mortal sin. The most they believe they can do is offend God in the Catholic sense of venial sin. Denial of mortal sin is another heresy. Mortal sin is real and it needs a doctor of the soul, a priest, to heal that rift created in their relationship with God. No amount of “I’m sorry” can fix it. It needs the sacrament and penance.

Did this man go to heaven? Not by any Catholic standard as established by Christ. We like to think he did. We like to think that all the prayer services that Protestants have give glory to God. But do they? Are they worshiping God for who He is or are they worshiping their false image of God (an idol if you will, fashioned after their own self, their own will)?

This is the insidiousness of Satan. He does not need to get people to deny God or to do terrible evil things. He is happy that they are going to services on Sunday and proclaiming their abridged bible, shouting “Alleluia,” and making music with their bands. Satan is happy because they are not in the one true Church where there is real grace and a real encounter with God and the chance to receive Him physically, just as the disciples did. Therefore there is less chance for real conversion, less chance fore real repentance, and so no real reconciliation and little chance of salvation. While they may do good works and offer them to their version of God, they are not offered to the one true God as He truly is.

I understand that the Protestants of today are not the ones who committed the crime of schism, that was Luther and his followers. Rather, they are the product of their upbringing and may have never known better. They have been taught that Catholics are pagans because we supposedly worship God and Mary. They have been taught horrible things about our Pope, some of which is deserved (some popes have been bad). Scandals in the Church have not helped Protestants to see our true nature and we will be held accountable to God for those scandals. Satan loves this fact. He loves that we have been a bad example of what it means to be a Christian. He loves that we have scandals that keep people from wanting to enter the Catholic Church. And he loves the fact that these problems have caused so many Catholics of today to leave the Church in favor of Protestantism or no faith at all. WOW! Do we ever have some accounting to do before God! Many of us will not survive the day of Judgment.

I have a saying when I teach or preach. “I have enough sins of my own to burn for, I will not burn for yours.” What I mean by this is that I will not teach less than the truth to make people happy and feel comfortable and empower you to live a sinful life. If I do, Scripture makes it very clear that I will burn for their sins because I lead them astray. Imagine the price people like Luther are paying for the souls they lead astray. OUCH!

If this is true, then why does God bless so many protestants? Good Question! He does bless them. In part as I described before, that we are praying for the Protestants and directing His grace toward them. Another is Gods divine providence. He chooses to bless them. He is God, He can do that. It is not a reflection on their goodness as people. God blesses bad people too. His ways are bigger than ours. Through His blessing, God empowers people to come to know Him, love Him and serve Him. Whether they avail themselves of that grace or not is up to free will. In the end, no one will be able to say, “But you did not give me enough grace.” God is more than generous with that gift. All will be accountable for not accepting God through His One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church also known as the Bride of Christ.

I also want to address another heresy that comes in many forms, but you might know it as the Prosperity Gospel. “I know that I am a good person because God has blessed me with prosperity.” People can appear to be blessed by God but in reality are allowed to do well by Satan. This is not to say that they directly worship Satan, I am sure they do not. And if they knew, I am sure they would make new choices. But Satan will set people up to do well and so they think they are good with God. With that, they believe they are among the saved. In fact, they may be lukewarm at best. Not much salvation there either. The devil leaves them alone; he has them right where he wants them.

As Catholic we must see Protestantism as a heresy and that what they worship is not God as we worship Him. It is but a faint image of our God. We must never see Protestantism as an alternative Christian life style. If we do it would be like seeing sodomy as an alternative life style and that is just disgusting and evil. They are not an alternative because the god they worship is faults as their faith does not have the fullness of truth and even contains errors. Very similar I know, but the differences can damn you especially when you have been taught the fullness of truth in the Catholic Tradition.

So to Catholics that have left, I say please come on back to the Church that you know in your heart has the true Faith. Do not let the sins of individuals in the Church damn you also. Let them burn for their sins and you come and worship and be saved.

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Hermit

Dear Faithful,

This posting takes a new direction. This news has been public for several months now, but I want to let my blog readers know about it also.

I have been working with Bishop Boyea for several months discerning a vocation to the life of a diocesan hermit. This is a highly unusual vocation for a diocesan priest, but after much prayer and soul searching, Bishop Boyea and I agree that I need to start moving in this direction in my life.

This is an important step for the Diocese of Lansing as she has never consecrated a hermit before.  And so three questions come to your mind, I am sure.  They are:

  1. What is a hermit?
  2. How does a hermit benefit the diocese?
  3. What does a hermit have to do with me (a member of the faithful)?

What is a hermit? A hermit, to put it simply, is a person who chooses to live a consecrated life much like a monk or nun, but chooses to live this life in solitude with God rather than in community.  To say that a hermit is consecrated means that the Church, through the Bishop, sets this person apart from the world. Their life is then dedicated to the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and obedience. A hermit further dedicates his life to solitude as he lives a life of prayer, work and penance. To understand the benefit of this we look at a quote from Pope Pius XI. He said,

Those in the Church who perform the function of prayer and continual penance, contribute to the growth of the Church and the salvation of the human race to a greater degree than those who cultivate the Lord’s field by their activity; for, if they did not draw down from heaven an abundance of divine grace to irrigate the field, the evangelical workers would certainly receive less fruit from their labors.

How does a hermit benefit the diocese? A diocesan hermit dedicates his life to prayer and penance for the diocese he lives in. He is directly under the bishop who directs his prayer life toward the needs of the diocese. The words of Pope Pius XI ring loud as we hear him say that the prayers of the consecrated contribute to the growth of the Church and the salvation of the human race. The prayers of the consecrated are said to not only help or assist, but also that they are necessary for a greater harvest in the Church.

What does a hermit have to do with me? The hermit is dedicated to praying for your salvation. But I thought the priest already does that? They do and I do. The difference is the consecration. Greater sacrifice means greater graces. The hermit sacrifices more of himself for the good of the Church and you its members.

This is what bishop Boyea and myself feel the Holy Spirit is calling me to for the good of the Diocese of Lansing. I desire to make this fuller sacrifice for you, the diocese and my own salvation.  The graces obtained from this life, I willingly and joyfully share with you. I will be more than happy to receive your letters or emails asking for prayers and directing my personal prayers and sacrifices for your needs.

I know that your lives are filled with constant activity and noise. You find it difficult to find a place and time of quiet and solitude with God to pray. I hope to help you in this. In the silence and solitude of my life I will be writing to you through a letter that is called Heroic Virtue. You will be able to come to my web site and download it for free. In this letter, I will give helpful advice on how to get holy, find that time to pray, how to make the little time you have for prayer be most fruitful, What prayers to use, inspirational books to read, and so much more.

A consecrated person is not to be a stranger to work. This is part of the tradition of ora et labora (prayer and work) for those in the religious life. This will be part of my life also. I will work a small 20 acre hobby farm where I will be raising my horse, dog, chickens, pigs and cows. The pigs and cows will be available for meat if people want to buy a side or whole animal. More details on that to come on the website.

Bishop Boyea and myself also find it important that I continue ministering in some official ecclesial ministry. For this reason, I will continue as the chaplain of St. John XXIII community in Lansing. This community is dedicated to providing the Mass and Sacraments according to the 1962 Rites for those who prefer them.

I would like to share two more questions with you:

Am I a hermit yet? I have not been consecrated a hermit at this time. Like the religious monks and nuns, I will have to pass through three stages of discernment. The first is the novitiate stage for two years. The second is to take temporary promises for 5 years and then to take my final promises that are for the rest of my life.

My novitiate is consisting of writing and beginning to live a Rule of Life. This is an official set of rules that govern how I am to live as a hermit. It covers everything from prayer, work, hospitality, time off the property, church matters, evangelical councils, health, hygiene and secular matters to name a few. The Rule of Life is governed and approved by the bishop of the Diocese of Lansing.

Also during my novitiate, I will build up the property to be practicl for the life of a hermit and to be a hobby farm. As part of this process, I have come to the understanding that my house is much to big for the humble life of a hermit who will profess poverty. My house is a manufactured home setting on a full walkout basement. I am in the process of selling the manufactured home part and have them remove it from the property. I will put a roof on the walkout basement and build my home there. What I will have then is a home built into the side of a hill. It will then resemble a cave like the hermits of old lived in.

How will I live financially? It is important that people know that the hermit must provide for himself. The Diocese is not responsible for their finances. With this in mind, I will continue to be the chaplain of a small community as mentioned earlier which will generate a wage that will take care of most of my needs. I will also be selling pigs and cows for meat. This will not generate a lot, but will help with the farming costs that provide much of my labor. I do not sell the eggs. They are a perk to my community as I bring the extra eggs to Church on Sunday for them to take. I will be giving a few conferences and retreats each year to raise some funds. I will also be accepting stipends for Mass, having a raffle or two each year and I will have to depend a little on the generosity of the faithful in the form of donations.

For more information on all the other aspects of my becoming a hermit, please see my website getholy.com.

Please pray for me as I am for you.

God Bless

Fr. Robideau

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Whom do they serve?

Whom do they serve?

I have spoken many times about how the separation of church and state has worked against us. The solution came to me in prayer the other day.

First the problem… We Christians have values and principals based on the teachings of the Bible. This makes them religious values and principals. Because of the separation of church and state, they say that we cannot impose our religious values and principals on the state. You see, they believe that they are taking the higher road of secular values and principals that are not restricted by the separation of church and state. Therefore they are able to impose theirs on us. The problem is that since our values and principals are based in religion, they are able to tell us to SHUT UP and then they proceed to tell us what is what.  Hillary Clinton has even said that religion has to change its teachings to fit their secular values. WOW! If that is not a violation of the separation of church and state, I do not know what is.

I have been saying for a while that they are following the values and principals of humanism, secularism, utilitarianism, and hedonism. I have been saying that these are a religion to them and that they are imposing their religion on us.

I did not follow my logic far enough and so God finished the flow of thought in my prayer the other day. To put it simply, what are the values and principals they follow: abortion, contraception, sexual promiscuity, homosexuality, socialism, redistribution of wealth, consenting adults, agree to disagree and many many more. Where do these values and principals come from? What is their source? What if I said that all these values and principals are defined by the Church as being evil? That is right… They have their origin in Satan.

You see, we follow values and principals that are known as virtue or goodness and justice. They follow what is know as vice or evil and injustice. While they may not name their god and may even claim to not have a god or care if there is a god, they are indeed worshiping at the altar of Satan. The values they follow are as much his as ours belong to God.

With this understanding, we go back to the simple tail of two cities. It is fact that you are either in one camp or the other. There is no in-between. There is no third option. Either you worship God or you worship Satan, even if unwittingly so.

Are we going to let them impose their satanic religion on us? They say we cannot impose ours on them? Due to false ecumenism, false compassion, false understanding, false tolerance, false patience, false humility, false…false…false, we have given them the upper hand. They have the moral high ground of being understanding and companionate when they are anything but that. They have been allowed to define the argument, the language and the rhetoric. With this power, they have set the world against us and against God. They look like the good guy and the new savior that liberates people from the oppression of religion.

Jesus sent us out into the world to preach the good news and to convert all to the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Faith. We are to win their hears and minds for Christ. We have failed. Their hearts and minds belong to SATAN. They worship him and love him. They love the false freedom and pleasure they enjoy at his prompting.

Note that this is not about politics. Everything is religious. The question is which religion are they following? Christianity or Satanism?

We need to start thinking the next time they say we are imposing our Christian values on them and remember that they are imposing their Satanic values on us.

Now what are you going to do…? I hope that the words courage and zeal come to mind. I hope the concept of spiritual battle comes to mind. I hope those beautiful words from a song come to mind – “To be willing to march into hell for our heavenly cause!” I know the song does not speak of what I am saying, but I love that line and I strive to live it daily. Or the beautiful words of St. Joan of Arc, “Let God be served first!” We serve God, not Satan. We serve God, not society. We serve God, not government. We serve God (period, exclamation point).!

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First Duty

First  Duty

To care for one’s self

It is very true that God makes it clear in Scripture that we are to care for those in need. The 2nd great commandment says we are to love our neighbor. The Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy state that we are to help others in various ways, including comforting, feeding, clothing, shelter, visiting, and, counseling and educating. But they also say to admonish the sinner which some would like to leave out. And they also include forgiveness to give us that great balance. We also see in the Sins That Cry Out To Heaven, it says to care for the widow and the orphan.

With these examples, we see that the Church has taken great care in giving us a solid list of good that we must do for our neighbor. These are of mandate, not suggestions as opportunities arise. Like the 10 commandments, they are not the 10 suggestions. It is very clear that the Church upholds and commands acts of charity.

Let us understand the word “charity.” According to the secular dictionary it means,

  1. “the voluntary giving of help, typically in the form of money, to those in need.”
  2. “an organization set up to provide help and raise money for those in need.”
  3. “kindness and tolerance in judging others.”

The dictionary even states that the word “charity” comes from the Latin caritas which means “high esteem, regard, respect, love, affection.”

Charity is about a relationship of love, of respect and of esteem. This is the way the Church uses the word charity. It means to love as God loves. Or as the Church actually states it, “it is a supernatural virtue by which a person loves God above all things for His own sake, and loves others for God’s sake.” This love, naturally, brings us back to the dictionary definition of charity. The dictionary only speaks of the actions that stem from love and fail to speak of the reason (love) for helping others. And so at the root of “GIVING” stuff to people is the act of love. Charity is an act of love and kindness. It is about showing respect to others and of being there for them in their need with the understanding of the saying “there, except for the grace of God go I.” In other words, God has blessed me with so much, and I understand that all I have comes from God and so as God has shared with me, I must share with others. This does not mean that God has withheld from them what they need and is punishing them, but that God chooses (Divine providence) that they should receive through the generosity and charity of others. If they do not receive, it is because of our own selfishness and greed and we will pay a heavy price on judgment day.

The next question is, “Then who is my brother in need?” Notice how my question is different from the man who asked Jesus “And who is my neighbor?” We know who our neighbor is. All mankind is my neighbor. No matter what sex, color, race, age, nation of origin, sexual preference, social class, or political affiliation. There is no classification one can come up with that can exclude any human person, in the womb or born, from being my neighbor. And so I am called to love my neighbor and to help my neighbor in need. Great! NOW, which one is in need is my question? Not all my neighbors are in need. So which one is it?

This new question will seem to some to mean that I must judge. Yes, I am. But judge in the good sense. We may not judge by saying this one is of some classification and so I will not help him. Rather, we ask is this person in need? If yes, then we ask, am I able to help this person, do I have what this person needs? If Yes, then I help them.

You ask, who am I to judge? What gives me the right to judge this? You cannot pick and choose Scripture. Remember that Scripture also says that I have the right to ownership. What is mine is mine and I must care for it properly, that is, not waste it. All that I have is gift from God and I must be a good steward.

So we turn to another point of Scripture that must not be evaded.  In 1 Tim 5:8, it says, “But if any man have not care of his own, and especially of those of his house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” And in 2 Thess 3:10 it says, “For also when we were with you, this we declared to you: that, if any man will not work, neither let him eat.” There are many other quotes also to this fact that a man is responsible to take care himself to the extent that he is able to take care of himself.  In other words, a man is not in need, if he is able to care for himself and his family. If he chooses to not take the steps necessary to care for himself and his family, I am not obligate to help him in charity. There is no shortage of jobs out there. People can work if they want to. Problem is that people do not want to work or will work only if it is the job they want.

The next concern is that it is societies fault, not the individual’s. Society is repressing him. Society is racist, sexist, homophobic… Because it is societies fault, it is the governments job to help them and the rest of you selfish citizens who work hard and earn your way in life will just have to pay up so they can sit at home and do nothing but spend your money. Again, you cannot pick and choose your scripture. Scripture makes it clear that you cannot punish an innocent man. If a man in his hiring practices is racist, sexist, homophobic… then punish the evildoer. Do not then take unjust taxes from the innocent people who are just trying to meek a living themselves.

That would now bring us to the rich. That evil 1% in particular. Again, Scripture… Scripture says a man has the right to what he has worked for. That is another command of the Church through the Sins That Cry Out To Heaven, do not deprive a man of his just wage. What a man earns is his. And let us not forget, that the 1% do a lot of charity with their money. Yes, I know many may not do it out of charity (love) but for tax reasons, but they are doing it. How many hospitals, schools, libraries, museums, soup kitchens… and so much more have been helped by 1%ers. It is not my case in this article to judge their souls. Do you think that it is the governments job, to judge these souls? Hmmmmmm.

Charity comes from the heart, not government (social programs.) When the government engages in social programs, they pick winners and losers with our money. How is that their right? Also, we know that they use it to help those who do not need help, wasting our money again. Also, they use it for things we would not want our money used for, depriving us of our right to exercise our morals based on religion. Here they pick who will sacrifice their rights and who will get their rights. Sense when is it right to deprive someone of a right? And we know that the government uses social programs as a way to buy votes. Who would not vote for a man who is going to give you free money and stuff?

Still further, if we want to speck of Charity as loving our neighbor, how is it loving to enslave people to the government? I thought we abolished slavery in this country? How is it loving to empower a man to steel from others under the guise of social assistance? If you are not in legitimate need, you have no right to my possessions and to take them through the government is still theft and that is against the 10 commandments. How is it loving to let people not fulfill their moral duty to care for themselves. They lose self respect and fall further into the sin of sloth.

The reality is that everyone is responsible to care for themselves to the extent they are able. After that people can choose to do charity by giving to those in need or in supplementing where they are lacking. It is this thinking that is moral, just and right. It is Scriptural and just makes intellectual sense to anyone who thinks about it. It is fair and hurts the fewest people. It still takes into account preferential option of the poor.

But some people will not get help! True. Even with the governmental system in place now, people fall through the cracks and much aid goes to people who do not need it. Jesus says, the poor you will always have with you. Unfortunately Jesus is correct. Some will always fall through the cracks. Just make sure it is not intentional and that you do the best you can do to help the most you can. Be sure to pray always for the poor and those we miss, God will somehow find another way to help.

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CPL Class in Church

CPL Class in Church

Hello again. It has been a while since I wrote last. A lot has happened since that time about which I could have, and perhaps should have, written. Lost opportunities…

I do not want to miss out on this one, however. I was asked to write on a situation where a priest was going to have a CPL (Concealed Pistol License) class at his parish. He even went as far to tell his people that they should take the class and to carry a pistol to protect themselves. In response, his bishop said that a church is no place to have a CPL class. Let us look at this.

I answer in short by saying, “What better place to have one?” Why? In a CPL class one is taught the legal aspects of when to carry, how to carry, when to draw and when to shoot. In a really good class, one is also taught how to avoid situations where one would have need to shoot. An example is: “Do not go where you do not belong!” While you have the right to go to a bar with a bad reputation, one needs to ask oneself: ”Do I have need to go to that particular bar?” You can still go, just know that you may be putting yourself in a situation where you may need to draw and shoot. If you want to avoid such a thing (which I recommend) then do not go there. This is important as one is also taught in a CPL class that the ultimate goal is to never have to draw and certainly never have to shoot. The gun is the last resort when all other avenues have run out. (As a disclaimer, please note that you are not legally allowed to carry a gun in a bar.)

So why would it be a good thing to teach the CPL class in a church? If the Church is sponsoring the class, then they could add other components to the class. Imagine if the CPL class not only taught the legal aspects, but also the moral and doctrinal aspects as well. That would be a well-rounded course for any Catholic. As the Catholic Church, whose duty it is to teach truth, this becomes yet another opportunity for us to teach TRUTH. The fullness of truth and not just the legal aspects.

The following are examples of what we could teach:

The Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraphs 2263-2267, teaches several things. These teachings fall under the heading of “Legitimate Defense.” It first states the difference between murder (the intentional taking of an innocent persons life) and self-defense (the preservation of ones own life by the killing of an unjust aggressor). Next it teaches that love toward oneself remains a fundamental principle of morality and so it is legitimate that one demand respect for one’s right to life. Continuing, it teaches that one must use moderation in protecting one’s self. One may not use excessive violence. At the same time, it is not necessary for salvation that one omit the act of moderate self-defense to avoid killing the other person since one is bound to take more care of one’s own life than of another’s. To show how serious the Catechism is on this issue, it continues to say that legitimate defense cannot only be a right but also a grave duty. The defense of the common good requires that an unjust aggressor be rendered unable to cause harm.

With all this in mind, it is true that a person has the right to self-defense. Unfortunately, the Catechism does not say how one is to secure their right to life. It is reasonable to believe, though, that if one has the right to self-defense, that one also has the right to the means of self-defense.  What do I mean by that? In the beginning cavemen would fight with their bare hands, then they learned to use stones then spears of sharpened wood, then with the use of sharp stone tips. Then came the sword and the bow and arrow. Then the musket, the riffle and the handgun. At each time in history, one had to have the prevailing weapon of the time to defend himself. Otherwise the aggressor would have the upper hand and one would not be able to defend himself or his family. It is reasonable to say that if one wants to have the opportunity to defend his life, should the need arise, that one needs to have a gun.

Jesus himself said in Luke 22, “and he that hath not, let him sell his coat and buy a sword.” In this same passage, we see Peter drawing his sword and striking the servant of the high priest. We see here that Peter carries a sword – the prevailing weapon of the day that a person would need to defend himself. He was carrying it at the last supper. Jesus did not tell him not to carry a sword, that it was “unbecoming an apostle.” But at that particular moment, Jesus did tell him to put it away.  This is an example of a time when it is better to die than to protect.

What is the difference between a good time to defend and other times when it is better to die? If it is a case of martyrdom, to die for the faith as a witness to the faith, then it may be better to die. In any other cases, self-defense may be the better way. Even in the case of martyrdom, I would say that one may find it better to self defense, like a father with several children to feed. No need to unnecessarily burden the wife and mother because of some idiot who hates Catholics.

In any case Jesus did not give evidence of disgust that His apostle had a weapon. He only said that something greater was happening here and that he would have to let it be. We may find the same situation in our life, that something greater than self-defense is occurring and that we may decide to die for it. This is not a case of pacifism. It is not that I am saying we need to be a pacifist, and never use violence, fight, cause harm, or kill. Rather I am saying that one may choose to fight a different battle than the one of self–defense. A battle that takes a different kind of heroism, a different kind of action. Note that I am calling for action, for bravery, for justice. The action of a martyr is not one of a coward, but is bold and beautiful. To die over one’s shoes – that is just a wasted life. Better to kill than to be killed in that case.

Note further, that when the Catechism speaks of the common good, it REQUIRES that an unjust aggressor be rendered unable to cause harm. I do a good and virtuous deed when I protect the common good. If I let a man kill me, how many more innocent people (women and children) will he kill? I have a legitimate, legal and moral opportunity to prevent any further unjust, immoral and evil transgressions against the common good. If I fail, due to inaction, when I had an opportunity, then shame on me.

We want to remember that God is not against violence. Violence is not evil in and of itself. God uses violence all the time. The flood. The plagues. The Passover. The incident in the Red Sea. The incidents at the foot of Mount Horeb and Mount Carmel. The many wars he called the Jews to fight. Again and again and again, we find violence in the Bible with God as the instigator. There is a time for war and a time for peace. This is wisdom, to know the difference and to act with prudence.

Violence is only evil when used for evil. We would all say that violence is also something that we want to avoid if at all possible. Agreed, so long as when it IS required we are ready and willing to act. To not act at such a time becomes an act of shameful cowardice – a vice and a sin. One must act, to the extent that he is capable, for his own good and then for the common good. Note that no Catholic has ever been able to claim on the basis of being a Catholic that he is a conscientious objector. Further we note how many Catholics join the military and police force. We have always been on the front line fighting for goodness, truth, and justice.

All these things and more, we can teach at a CPL class. So why not? Are we afraid of truth? Do we have an irrational fear of guns? OH NO! “Guns kill people!” – No, bad people kill people using all sorts of weapons, not only guns: knives, poison, cars, bare hands, pillows, baseball bats, hammers, screwdrivers, water, tall buildings, rope, electricity, and the list goes on.

I want to cover two more situations where Church teaching can be presented at a CPL class. The first is Castle Doctrine and the second is the idea of police being the First Responder.

In any situation we find ourselves where we have need to defend our lives, we have the first duty to flee the situation. Only when one is not able to flee, then they may stand and fight.

The Castle Doctrine says that in the home, one does not have to first flee, but can simply stand and fight, including the use of deadly force. To use deadly force, morally in any situation, one needs to have some reasonable belief that his life is in immanent danger or that he may suffer grave harm. In the home, this sense of danger is more readily achieved. One needs to believe that if someone breaks into their home, that this same person is also ready to kill or cause grave harm to the residents in order to avoid going to jail or being killed themselves.

The use of the Castle Doctrine is not for the purpose of protecting ones material things. Between life and material things, life always takes precedence. It is only in the life vs. life or life vs. serious personal harm that one can take life. What is “Serious Harm?” Think of all the harm that comes ones way when the home is violated. Forget the loss of material possessions, even important mementoes. Material things can be replaced and memories are in the heart not the material items, as important as they may be.

Think of the personal harm. First is the physical harm. If I am harmed in a way that I would am physically no longer able to do my job, then I cannot feed my family. Physical harm can also mean I can no longer feed or dress myself. I can simply mean that I lose my quality of life, no longer able to do the things I love to do. Remember the RIGHT to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Another type of harm comes form the fact that the home is one’s castle and place of safety and security. When this is violated, the psychological harm is grave and can have lasting and devastating effects well into the future. This is true, even if one is not home at the time of the break-in. Personal safety and security is not a novelty, a license or a convenience. It is a basic human right. It is one of the first survival instincts we have. After food and water, one seeks shelter and security. It is vital to human survival and psychological well being. No one has a right to take it from us. The home is sacrosanct. You violate it, you place your own life into the hands of another. It is THAT serious.

Some might say, just give them your stuff and they will go. This is not true. You have seen their face. It is true that many people have done everything the assailant asked and still were killed in the end. Turning over your wallet is no assurance that you will live. Not any more, not in today’s twisted society. At one time it was true that if you handed over your wallet you would live, today that is no longer the case. To act reasonably and responsibly, one has to take his current social condition into account when deciding whether he should use deadly force or not.

Protecting the Domestic Church, the home, is a primary duty of the father. Jesus protected His Father’s house when it was violated and made a den of thieves. It is further a father’s duty to make sure his wife is ready and able to defend the home front when he is away. The children too when they are old enough and mature enough.

The second point is to mention that some think the police are there to protect us and we should let them do their job. This is a dangerous way to think. I have a great respect for police. I have been the chaplain to a police department and have been on several ride alongs with others. But we know that when seconds matter, police are minutes away. This is not an insult to them. They cannot physically be everyplace. What this means is that police are not the “First Responders” as they are commonly called today. Think about it. A person is robbing me. Who is the first person that needs to respond to the situation? ME! I am the first responder to my own situation. That response may be to dial 911, but often there is no time, I must act now.

It is agreed that once the police are there, they are the best trained to meet the needs of the situation and that we should stand back and let them do their job. But until they get there, we must deal with the situation as best as we can without (God willing) getting hurt or killed.

Who is the Second Responder? Any bystanders. How would you feel if you saw someone getting raped and you could have done something if only you had gun? But no, the best I can do is break out my phone dial 911 and take pictures. The police show up 30 minutes later and take your statement. The poor lady, well, she is too traumatized or dead to give a statement by that time. In other words, police are the Third Responders. Thank God when they get there, we hope they can find the guy before he rapes again.

Let us empower our people with legal, doctrinal and moral truth so they can make the best decisions that they can in the God given right to self-defense of themselves and their loved ones. For this reason and more, the Church is a GREAT place to have a CPL class.

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Law???

Law???

I know this has been said in different ways, but let me take a moment to state it my way, from the perspective of Faith. In particular, from the perspective of the 4th commandment – Honor thy Father and Mother. From this commandment, we teach that one must respect legitimate authority and must obey a just civil law.

We have the Declaration of Independence, a very important document and one that sets the foundation and basic principles for the Constitution of the United States. In particular it recognizes the God of the Christians and that this God has authority that should not be violated by man, among them are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

The Constitution continues to recognize this God by implementing fundamental principals of freedom and rights of the individual over the state and follows the word of Jesus when He said that you would have no authority if it were not given to you by my Father. That is to say that the three branches of Government have no authority if it is not given to them by the Constitution (enumerated rights). Why is this important? It was done for the protection of the people, that government would remain small in its reach into the lives of people, so that their (Christian) God given rights would not be violated.

The Constitution is then clear in these enumerated rights that Congress is the Legislative branch, that is the part of government that makes the laws. It further declares that the President is the Executive branch, that is the part of government that implements the law.

We keep in mind the hierarchy of laws here. The Constitution and the principals of the Declaration of Independence upon which it is founded is the highest law of the land, second only to God’s laws. The laws then passed by both houses of Congress and signed into law by the president must be in conformity to the Constitution. They may not violate or change the Constitution. The third branch of the government, the Judicial branch, is the one who is in charge to make sure that this happens.

In other words, the laws passed and signed are only authoritative to the extent that the are legal themselves. Legal means in conformity with the Constitution that limits government with only a certain arena of authority.  Note that an arena has a perimeter, a boundary.

The first point being, the president can only exec the laws as written and may not exec beyond or above the law as written. The idea that Obama thinks he can move without congress is immoral on many fronts. It is his job to wait for congress to do their part. And if Congress is divided, then the president must wait. He can assist Congress in coming up with a law, but he may not usurp their authority under the guise of executive decision.

Law ends with Congress. No one else may write law. Then what of all these so-called laws made by bureaucrats, departments, and agencies? These cannot be called laws as such. They do so as to scare us, but they are not laws. They are mandates, rules, regulations, or other such things. They are sub law for they were not passed by Congress. They were made by unelected bureaucrats who like the President can only exec the laws and only those laws that pertain to their little fiefdom.

Now let us look at the Supreme Court decision on Hobby Lobby. What was the problem? The problem was that a department (HHS in this case) wanted to make as law, the obligation of business to provide contraception to employees. The HHS does not have the right to make laws. They made a mandate of some sort. A mandate that they wanted to trump the 1st Amendment of the Constitution. They wanted a mandate to be given more authority than the highest Authority of the land. And in doing so, they wanted to trump the law of THE HIGHEST AUTHORITY – GOD! They want people to forgo their God given and Constitutionally recognized right to practice their faith for a lesser bureaucratically made mandate.

People are decrying that we are taking away woman’s right. First, we (Catholics) do not recognize that woman have a right to contraception. To health care yes, but not to contraception. And as to health care, people (man or woman, adult or child, of whatever race, or creed) only have the right to have access to health care. No one has an obligation to give it to them or to pay for it for them. We can talk about charity some other time on this point. On a second note. While women may have a legal right (a license) to use contraception, no one has the obligation to provide it to them. Again, this is by Catholic standards as guaranteed us by God and Constitution.

As such, the Supreme Court said that Hobby Lobby was correct. They said that a constitutional law may not be trumped by a bureaucratic mandate.

To this I go a bit further. A note to Hobby Lobby. It is great that you agree that the 4 contraceptives are immoral and contrary to your faith. But what of the other 16? They are immoral too and contrary to your Faith.

Let me go further. If a bureaucrat cannot trump the Constitution, can Congress? This was already answered. Congress can only make laws that are in conformity to the Constitution. So when they pass a budget and laws that force us to pay taxes to pay for contraception, abortions, and many other things that are contrary to our Faith, are those laws legal? They are forcing us under the threat of prison, to fund immoral activity that violates our Faith and is an act that if we directly participated in would mean automatic excommunication. That is how serious it is to our Faith.

Is there a 1st amendment in the Constitution or not? And should it not apply to Congress as well? It applies to HHS.

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