Sunday, November 30, 2008

Grotto Musical: The Heritance - This Wednesdsay, Friday and Next Sunday

Young people and some adults roll mini-posters for The Heritance - an original musical stage play with some 60 parishioners involved, mostly young people. These folks have been enduring 4-5 hour rehearsals, 2-3 times weekly for a few months now. Many more hours went into carpentry, sound system setup, lighting and more. Let's pack the gym!!!

Just a reminder that the Grotto musical production, The Heritance, runs this Wednesday, Friday (7:00pm), and this coming Sunday (3:00pm). Tickets were suppose to be in the gift shop after the 9:30 am Mass, but they were still at the rectory. You should be able to get your tickets at the door (click on the poster below for details).

See my previous post for an article that appeared in the local Detroit Free Press recently which included an interview with Grotto's pastor, Fr. Eduard Perrone, who wrote the music for the symphony which will be in the mock "pit" for all three performances this time.

Sorry I can't show any photos from the stage rehearsals, but I can show you some of what was going on in the pre-rehearsal hours (makeup and microphones take hours to put on the many performers so they are there hours ahead of time).

When you are just a baby and your mom and dad are in the show, there is no shortage of people to watch you at Assumption Grotto - a place with lots of families and kids.

Fr. Perrone makes a last minute adjustment to the music.

Posters! Posters! And, more Posters! Some of our youngest performers worked very hard on stage and off. And, you should hear them sing in their solos!!!!

Fr. Perrone gets a little mental conducting practice down as the piano plays for the practice sessions.

Young people are involved in many facets of the production. The laptop shown will run words being sung above the stage so the audience can see the lyrics.

And, the folks had all kinds of ways to help pass the time in between action.

The there!!!

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

A priest blogs Michael D. O'Brien's "Fr. Elijah - An Apocalpyse" & Modernism

With Advent coming, I was already thinking about pulling back a little on the blogging so that I could spend some time to read some of the great Catholic classics and other spiritual works. But, God wanted to make sure it didn't remain just a thought....

At the 9:30 TLM today, Fr. John started his homily off by talking about the classic spiritual works that we don't seem to have time to read anymore. Father reflected for a moment about where the time might be going. As he pointed out, the day still has 24 hours and we still need a certain number of hours to sleep. Yet, we still have less time these days. Why?

Fr. John pointed to our obsession with electronics. We are engrossed with email, blackberries, iPods, Television, Computers, Internet, texting.....and, the list goes on. He enouraged us to pull back during Advent and I'm going to encourage you to do the same by not posting as frequently. Rather than post daily, I may do so a few times weekly.

I also found a post I want to pass along at the blog of Fr. Dwight Longenecker - a book review and a simple, yet indepth explanation of Modernism. I'll give you just a snippet and you can follow the link to his blog to read the rest. He is speaking of the book, "Fr. Elijah" by Michael D. O'Brien - part of a series that I see in our own Grotto giftshop.

"....What the book does best is reveal the major heresy of our time. Modernism is the blend of many other 'isms', among them scientism, rationalism, sentimentalism, idealism and utilitarianism.

Scientism believes science has all the answers, rationalism thinks the answers are all logical, sentimentalism is the dependance on emotional urgings for decision making, idealism trusts in a great ideal and utilitarianism trusts in what is efficient or what gets the job done. Relativism is the grand-daddy of them all, and says that there is no such thing as absolute truth.

In other words, modernism is the conviction that the supernatural is nothing more than silly wishful thinking of medieval-minded, superstitious old women (of every age and both genders) and that real religion is about changing the world instead of the salvation of souls.

This basic error is at the heart of a very fundamental dichotomy in our culture and our church. It doesn't take too much analysis to see how modernism soon leads to tyranny. The modernist idealist (who doesn't believe in the next world) has only one lifetime to try to make this world a better place, and to do so, he will use any means necessary. Thus all the great tyrannies have marched through the last century, shedding more blood than the world has ever seen. Each one believed in making the world a better place, and believed in killing all who held back their utopian dream.

What is most disturbing is to see how this heresy has invaded the Catholic Church. So we have bishops and priests and people who invest all their time and energy in trying to make this world a better place rather than saving souls for the next...."

Go read Fr. Longenecker's post: Fr. Elijah and End Times

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Is this what Christmas is about? Man trampled to death!

This is absolutely horrifying. It was only a few years ago, before I got serious about my faith that I use to go out the day after Thanksgiving to the malls and "fight" the crowds. I regret how much I use to spend on gifts every year when I should have been giving more of that money to worthy charities.

How many people buying so-called "Christmas gifts" participated in this kind of madness all across the US?

Christmas is not about going nuts for bargains!

A 34-year-old man died and a 28-year-old woman suffered an apparent miscarriage when they were trampled in a rush of Black Friday shoppers at a Long Island mall today, police said.

Long lines of shoppers thronged outside the Wal-Mart at the Green Acres mall in Valley Stream before it opened for post-Thanksgiving business at 5 a.m.

"When the doors opened, all hell broke loose," a law enforcement source told The Post.


An unidentified man, believed to be a store employee who tried to restrain the oncoming juggernaut, was knocked to the ground at 5:03 a.m.

He was rushed to a local hospital but declared dead at 6:03, police said.

Four other people were hospitalized, including the pregnant woman. She was knocked to the store floor a short distance from where the 34-year-old man was trampled.

The other three people taken to hospitals suffered minor injuries.

Source: New York Post, 11:16am update (Note: this is a fresh news story which may be updated several times within the provided link. What is provided above is a snapshot in time).

God help us when people have to die for the sake of a bargain.

UPDATE at 4:07pm: Fox News is reporting that woman trampled, who is 8 months pregnant has not miscarried. If someone gets a later update, feel free to drop a note in the combox.

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Coming Next Week: The Heritance - An Assumption Grotto Theatrical Production (includes Detroit Free Press interview with Fr. Perrone)

I have been wanting to tell you about the latest original, theatrical production at Assumption Grotto which will take place on the following days:

Wednesday, December 3, 2008 (7:00 pm)
Friday, December 5, 2008 (7:00 pm)
Sunday, December 7, 2008 (3:00 pm)

For tickets and more information: 313 372-0762

Parking can be an issue at Assumption Grotto. There is a secure lot, but I would encourage you to get there early. Last year, the final performance had so many people, they had to delay the start of the show as people looked for a place to park.

I was also alerted to this wonderful interview in the Detroit Free Press with our pastor, Fr. Eduard Perrone who wrote the music. Several members of the Detroit Symphony will be in the orchestra, as they were in Palla Eius. I'm providing a link to the article, but it may disappear offline after a few weeks so I am also adding the text and picture here that appeared in the Thanksgiving Day 2008 issue of the Detroit Free Press.

When the Assumption Grotto Catholic Church decided to put on a show to commemorate its 175th anniversary last year, organizers thought it might attract a few hundred people. Instead, nearly 1,600 folks filled folding chairs in the church's old gym auditorium over three weekend performances.

This success has led to a second, even more ambitious musical production, again composed and conducted by the church's pastor, the Rev. Eduard Perrone. It's being performed Wednesday and Dec. 5 and 7.

Set in the 1920s, "The Heritance" is the story of a man, made mean by the death of his wife, who softens when he meets an orphan girl.

The show includes 45 cast members (many of them children) and 12 musicians, including some members of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

Perrone, 60, has been pastor at the historic church for 14 years. As the son of Detroit big band musician Phil Perrone, he comes by his love of music naturally. A graduate of Cass Tech High School, he also studied composing and conducting at the University of Louisville and the Aspen School of Music before becoming a priest.

QUESTION: How do you describe the musical style of "The Heritance"?

ANSWER: There's a little of everything in this work: Broadway-style music, romance, jazz, fugue, etc. The music is modern but singable. ... I especially enjoy the instrumental pieces, which afford me a chance to test my writing skills.

Q: How does the parish community (or the community in general) benefit from these theatrical works?

A: Theater with music has a way of lifting people from the tedium and worry of their ordinary lives and makes them aspire to great things. Among those who greeted the last musical with particular appreciation were many beyond our own parish. I could see that there was a sincere interest in doing more of the same and offering it for the wider community.

Q: Children are a huge part of the show. What do you think they take away from this experience?

A: Children have a remarkable capacity to do things well beyond what is usually expected of them. With direction and instruction, our kids have proved their capabilities to act, sing, dance and to develop their personalities through theater. The educational value of this kind of experience for youth is inestimable.

Q: What do you want to say in "The Heritance," especially in response to what you have called (in the show's press release) "the vacuum of evil" that now defines popular music, TV, literature and film?

A: Yes, I think the message of popular music, especially rock music, has demoralized our kids, hopefully not our kids, or your kids, but then again, who's to say?

The show is a modern morality play, but very subtle. There are religious themes in it, but they are not bathed in halos or religious sentimentality. There's humor, sadness and love, as well as faith.

Theater, I think, should be uplifting, inspirational, and there should be a catharsis involved, causing the audience to go back into the light of day enthused and renewed.

Q: What has been the response from the Catholic archdiocese?

A: Priests, some nuns and a bishop attended last year and were very supporting and even surprised at the level of our achievement. It helps put a good face on the church as a supporter of the arts, a role it had historically but with which it is not so often associated today.


Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Of all the things we must do on this American holiday of Thanksgiving, is to give thanks to God. At the top of my list is a thanks to Him, the Author of life for creating me and giving me an opportunity to be with Him for all eternity. I thank Him for the Mother to whom he sent me, who said, "yes" to life. I thank Him for the job that enables me to have a roof over my head, food on my table, for the heat that keeps me warm, and the water I can get right out of a faucet in my home. I thank Him for my family and friends.
Among my many other thanks to God is my thanks for a great parish - Assumption Grotto, with her many faithful priests who teach the faith with great clarity and simplicity. I am grateful that they give of themselves generously with all of the sacraments, especially the Mass and Confession. I am thankful too that they pass along this great heritage of the Catholic faith in all of its fullness and richness. Without it, I wouldn't have come to appreciate the Real Presence in the Eucharist, Adoration, and how to appreciate that I can come to know Jesus even better through his own Mother, whom was given to all mankind with those famous words on the Cross, "behold your Mother!"
For these and many other things, I now head out the door to Holy Mass. Assumption Grotto always has a good turnout at their annual 9:00am Thanksgiving Day Mass. It's a new tradition for me - one that never crossed my mind until I found this parish in 2005.
Oh - and thank God for blog readers. I include you all in my intentions this morning.
Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Catholic Legislators and FOCA - What is a Bishop to do?

Canon Lawyer, Ed Peters, who teaches at nearby Sacred Heart Seminary in Detroit has an interesting post up about Catholic pols and FOCA. He begins as follows:

Canonical options for dealing with Catholic legislative support for FOCA. The final wording of the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) has yet to be set, but there is every indication that it will be the most radical piece of pro-abortion legislation ever proposed at the federal level. The near certainty that FOCA will be re-introduced (compounded by the increased likelihood that it will pass and be signed into law) means that, ready or not, Catholic bishops will have to face squarely the problem of well-known Catholic legislators supporting a specifically and gravely evil bill. As I see it, bishops have four options for dealing with Catholic legislators who support FOCA:

Continue reading Ed Peter's post: Canonical options for dealing with Catholic legislative support for FOCA

To read more posts from Ed and to check out the many resources he has and list of published works, visit his blog, In Light of the Law

Fight FOCA!

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Feast of Christ the King

The center of the Ghent Altarpiece (Van Eyck, c 1425)

Today is the Feast of Christ the King in the ordinary form. In the extraordinary form, The Kingship of Our Lord Jesus Christ, was celebrated on the last Sunday in October.

It was in 1925 that Pope Pius XI gave to the Church, Quas Primas, the Encyclical on the Feast of Christ the King. I have not had a chance to read this entire document, but something did catch my eye that I would like to share:

25. Moreover, the annual and universal celebration of the feast of the Kingship of Christ will draw attention to the evils which anticlericalism has brought upon society in drawing men away from Christ, and will also do much to remedy them. While nations insult the beloved name of our Redeemer by suppressing all mention of it in their conferences and parliaments, we must all the more loudly proclaim his kingly dignity and power, all the more universally affirm his rights.
What was written in 1925 still applies today. The kingdom is not of this world, nor should we conform ourselves to secularism and humanism which has permeated all facets of society. As members of the Church succumb to these ideologies, the Mystical Body suffers much like the human body when infection exists in one small area.

Here are some related links, not necessarily from this year:

As an aside, Fr. Z has an interesting note about another event: This day in ancient history

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Learning the Faith: Healing the Spirit Series with Fr. Brian Mullady, OP

If you are around me for any length of time you will learn that I hate getting up early, but love being up early. I hit the snooze a few times this morning, but managed to be up by 6:00. After finishing Lauds, I made breakfast and turned on EWTN. There was a very good, half-hour show called Healing the Spirit. It was, I believe, episode 7 which was about grace and prayer.

I have known about the Dominican priest, Fr. Mullady, as I had seen him many times on the network and he is a contributor to Homiletic and Pastoral Review - the only subscription that I have kept (it's not news based so the information is timeless and the writers are solid). Like other EWTN personalities he is very catechetically and theologically solid. He speaks with great simplicity.

He spoke about the various attitudes we can have concerning prayer from wanting to find "the right method" to enter contemplation to thinking that "if only it weren't for [fill in the blank], I could live more holy". He brought up a quote by Fr. Dubay - another well-loved spiritual master and EWTN personality that I thought was great. [post edited here for original quote taken from, The Fire Within, page 247]

Most people would not even cross the street to witness an unobtrusive act of patience being put into practice, but they will cross an ocean to visit the locale of an alleged apparition. While both Teresa and John appreciated an authentic vision, they were empathetic that a simple act of pure love is of more value.

He mentioned St. Teresa of Avila and the mansions and covered some common errors people make with regards to prayer. He really packed a lot - effectively, in just 30 minutes.

If someone has the book in which Fr. Dubay makes this statement, please write it into the combox or email me at I would like to edit this post with the exact quote. It was classic Fr. Dubay: powerful, yet simple.

Anyway, I highly recommend watching this series and if you are blessed with a secure job right now, get the DVD's. You would be supporting EWTN while at the same time, having a great spiritual watering hole you will likely watch more than once. Fr. Mullady has a number of other great talks on DVD.

Samples from HPR can be found online. They publish one or two articles per month online out of the dozen or so that are in the print edition. It is one of the best monthly, Catholic reads you can get. It even has a section of homilies for the Sundays of the upcoming month so if you are in a parish where you get a lot of namby-pamby, you'll appreciate them.

I just got an email that through the HPR Online site there is a special trial offer to get HPR for one year at $9.95 (11 issues). Try this periodical - I can guarantee you will renew at the regular cost of $26 for 11 issues. I read it cover to cover when I get mine.

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Time for Catholic Complacency is Over....

Watch this video recently uploaded to YouTube. Watch it soon because stuff like this disappears for "violation of the Terms of Service" all the while total filth is permitted to run up 50 million hits.

Keep in mind that in various parts of the world Catholics - including priests and religious, and other Christians, are dying because of their faith. What this video is about, is white martyrdom - dying to self.

This means letting go of TV time to pray and getting off the computer to call a politician to tell them to vote against culture of death legislation. It means making a commitment to getting to Mass every Sunday and sometimes during the week, and praying the Rosary as a family.

It means taking the time to educate yourself - learning not just about the faith, but why certain teachings, loathed by the world, are what they are. Most people who study the leading documents of the Church on certain topics come to realize just how much thought went into them.

We can't afford to be complacent any longer because it is up to us to help others along.

Christ didn't say the road would be broad, but narrow. He didn't say it would be easy, but difficult.

[edit: video from YouTube deleted due to a problem with some virus software indicating a virus (false positive). In order to not freak people out, I've just removed the video embed for now. More on the false positive virus here.]

CATHOLICISM - Live your faith! It's not for wimps.

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Rumor: Change coming at Congregation for Divine Worship?

This is a big one.

Is this Cardinal retiring next month....

And, being replaced by this Cardinal?

There is considerable buzz on the internet that with the 76 year old Cardinal Arinze's Jubilee coming up on November 23 it is thought that his replacement will be announced.....soon. It just so happens that the Cardinal from Spain was received by the Holy Father today, in audience, as reported by the Vatican's daily Bollettino (and provided later in English at the Vatican Information Service - VIS).

Both Fr. Z and the New Liturgical Movement have more.

Many had long hoped for the candid Archbishop Ranjith, the current Secretary of the CDW would get the job. However, Cardinal Llovera is also very good. Scroll down to read the NLM post from June, entitled: "The Little Ratzinger" to head CDW?

If you want a clue about his liturgical taste, a picture is worth a thousand words:

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Real Catholic TV gets a Green Rating from Catholic Culture

One particular site that has been very useful to me is Catholic Culture. I regularly consult their site reviews. Here, explained at the site:

The Catholic Culture staff assigns grades to each web site it reviews. Individual grades are given in three distinct areas: Fidelity (to the Magisterium), Resources(Quality and Quantity), and Usability.

Please continue reading to find out more! (Click here to read about the ratings system in detail).

Today, I learned in the broadcast below, that Real Catholic TV has earned a green rating at Catholic Culture which means it meets all criteria favorably.

You can watch several things free each day. I use the "full screen mode" and let it run. Here is the news for today with Vic Faust. I encourage you to watch the whole clip as there are several stories in here that I wanted to cover, but just don't have time. That is the benefit of watching the news each day at Real Catholic TV is you pick up several Catholic and culture of life stories in a matter of minutes. You can also watch Michael Voris' brief commentaries in the Vortex, as well as watch a clip about the saint of the day, and what took place on this day. There are also video clip messages coming in from Bishops that you can watch for free. Real Catholic TV has many premium options too for $10.00 monthly - unique programming.

[Note: Embedded video removed due to problems with a particular virus software which sees certain parts of embed code as malware. All videos were removed from my front page for the time being to spare people panic from this false virus]

I don't embed as many samples from Real Catholic TV as I would like because they seem to make the loading of my homepage buggy. I've reported it previously and don't know if it's unique to blogger or not. Drop me an email at if you experience any problems with my homepage stalling to load with this video embedded. It seems I can only work with it in HTML mode once I have pasted in the code (things freeze up in "compose" mode as the video attempts to start playing, then shuts off).

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

When you think things are bad here in America....

But he said to her, "You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?" (Job 2:10a)

With so much dire economic and anti-life news filling the air, it's easy to feel depressed. We need to keep some things in mind...

The thought that babies are murdered at any stage of development, is maddening to me. It's barbaric and reflective of an uncivilized people. As I continue to work and pray for an end to the silent, hidden slaughter with many of you, I try to keep something simple in mind: As much as I love those babies, God loves them more than I ever could. I don't have nearly the capacity to love the unborn as does God, the author of life. Further, God's love is unconditional. Hence, he loves the abortive mother and father, as well as the abortionist. It is in this light that we pray and make sacrifices in our lives for the God-pleasing conversion of these people.

In the history of the Church, there have been atrocities committed by rulers. The hunt for the Christ child involved the murder of the Holy Innocents. One of the greatest persecutors of the early Church was Diocletian (245-313 AD). From the online Catholic Encyclopedia:

Three further edicts (303-304) marked successive stages in the severity of the persecution: the first ordering that the bishops, presbyters, and deacons should be imprisoned; the second that they should be tortured and compelled by every means to sacrifice; the third including the laity as well as the clergy. The atrocious cruelty with which these edicts were enforced, and the vast numbers of those who suffered for the Faith are attested by Eusebius and the Acts of the Martyrs. We read even of the massacre of the whole population of a town because they declared themselves Christians (Eusebius, loc. cit., xi, xii; Lactant., "Div. Instit.", V, xi).

There is nothing that can happen to me that God does not either will, or permit. How I respond is what matters. Our Lord led by example, shows us that life is not simply made up of Christmas and Easter, but the way of the Cross, as well.

Brethren, join in imitating me, and mark those who so live as you have an example in us. For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is the belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. 20 But our commonwealth is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will change our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power which enables him even to subject all things to himself. (Phil 3:17-20)

Merely accepting the pain of comprehending the evil of something like abortion is something that can be offered up as a sacrifice along with our prayers. God is "consoled" when we accept the suffering that comes to us - physical, emotional, and spiritual - when we unite it with His suffering. It is one of the many crosses we can bear because Evil has been with us since the beginning of time.

On the economic front, we see layoffs happening daily and companies collapsing left and right. People are rightfully conserving cash because they don't know if they will have a job tomorrow and it is resulting in more lost jobs. But, I go back to point one: There is nothing that can happen to me without God's willing it, or permitting it.

It could be that God will call some of us to the loss of job and home, and into deep hardship. How will we respond? We can mourn the loss of things like cable and internet, as well as new clothes and insurance-paid doctor visits and prescriptions. We can loath the thought of buying cheaper grades of food, used clothes, and passing time by reading books and playing board games. Somehow, I wonder if God doesn't have lessons for us to learn through such things. The "good life" is not a prerequisite for getting into heaven. In fact, the opposite may be true as it is easier to become lukewarm in the faith amidst material comfort.

My thoughts turn to the kind of reality lived by our suffering brothers and sisters around the world on a dialy basis for years - people struggling to survive not only the heavy cross given them, but life itself.

If things are bad enough to get you down today, please read some of these articles. They are not meant to depress you further, but to show that as bad as we have it, someone else has it far worse. It is only by the grace of God that we are not in their shoes. Spend some time thanking God for the many blessings that you do have. As you will see, suffering for the sake of Christ is still endured by Christians today. We may lose our jobs and our homes, but we can still practice our faith without the level of persecution experienced by others. Therefore, endure all for the sake of Christ. Offer up the suffering in reparation for the offenses to God happening around the world - seen, and unseen.

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Pro-Choice Catholic Chosen to Run Health and Human Services

I have not been home much and got int the door not long ago. It is late and I have to get up quite early. I can only refer you to some good stuff out there on this subject. Things are going to get interesting in the Church here in America as so many pro-choice Catholics get put into positions that will put them at odds with teaching.

Former senator Tom Daschle (D-SD) has been chosen by Obama to run Health and Human Services - the administrative arm which will usher in FOCA

There is some interesting background floating around the blogosphere worth reading up on with regards to Daschle and Bishop Carlson - formerly of Sioux Falls, SD and now of Saginaw, MI. (Please Lord, we in Detroit would love to have Bishop Carlson when Cardinal Maida retires).

I'll refer you to these posts and old news articles:

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Last-minute abortion ruling by Bush causes furor

His days are numbered, but the man is still working.....for life.

Te Deum Laudamus! Home

The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

ACTION ALERT! — Urge Michigan Senate to defeat so-called “hate crime” law

From the American Family Association (emphasis mine in bold)


Thurs., Nov. 13, 2008

CONTACT: Gary Glenn 989-835-7978

Family values group criticizes Michigan House passage of “hate crime” bill

“Divisive and discriminatory” bill violatesequal justice under law, group says

LANSING, Mich. — A statewide family values group late Thursday criticized the Michigan House of Representatives for approving legislation that would provide more severe prison sentences for crimes against certain individuals based on their membership in special “protected class” categories.

Gary Glenn, Midland, president of the American Family Association of Michigan, labeled the legislation “divisive and discriminatory.”

“All citizens should receive equal protection under the law,” Glenn said, “a principle this legislation clearly violates when it provides that a criminal who attacks a small child or a pregnant mom or a senior citizen should be punished less severely than someone who assaults a grown man, solely because that grown man engages in homosexual activity.”

“Because it segregates victims of crime into specially protected categories based on behavioral characteristics such as homosexual behavior or cross-dressing, then doles out more severe sentences for attacking someone in one of those special categories, it sends the discriminatory message that some individuals are worthy of greater protection by society than others,” Glenn said. “Someone who attacks your 75-year old grandmother might get six months in jail, but under this bill, would get a harsher and longer prison sentence for attacking a 25-year old man just because he engages in homosexual behavior.”

Glenn said his group will urge the state Senate to reject the bill.

“We will ask Michigan families to join us in urging the state Senate to stop this divisive and discriminatory legislation that also threatens religious free speech rights, that has already been used in other states to prosecute citizens merely for publicly expressing their religious conviction that homosexual behavior is wrong,” he said.

Glenn cited the arrest in 2005 of a multi-racial group of Christians — including a 75-year old African-American grandmother — who were arrested in Philadelphia and prosecuted under that state’s “hate crime” law merely for reading Bible verses on a public street during a “gay pride” festival.

“Consistent with their attempts to silence critics of the homosexual agenda through fear and intimidation tactics such as disrupting church services in Lansing,” he said, “homosexual activists would similarly use this new law if enacted to try to suppress the religious free speech rights of their critics here in Michigan.”

Glenn pointed to a news release earlier this year in which the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force suggested that he and Cardinal Adam Maida — because they publicly supported a Marriage Protection Amendment to the state constitution — should be held responsible as accessories to the falsely alleged beating death of a homosexual man in Detroit. “It is appalling hypocrisy for these forces to pretend that their venomous words and organizing have no connection to the plague of hate violence against gay people, including the murder of Mr. Anthos,” NGLTF said.,65356.shtml

Detroit police and the Wayne County Coroner’s office later announced there was no evidence of any assault and that the man died of a head injury resulting from a fall caused by arthritic paralysis of his neck.

Send an email to your Senator

Read more

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Coming soon...

Fr. Perrone has kindly sent me his homilies from this past Sunday (Noon), the previous Sunday (9:30am), and from the 40 Hours Devotion closing ceremony.

I don't have time right now, but will soon upload them one at a time, sequentially.

They are very..... Perronesque!

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Skewered in North Carolina: A Pastor Speaking to His Flock about Voting for Pro-Abortion Obama

I have not had time to get the news to you, which you have undoubtedly already heard about from other sources, about Fr. Jay Scott Newman in Greenville, SC.

Fr. Newman is well known among internet Catholics of a traditional bent. It wasn't that long ago that he catechized his parish on the ad orientem celebrated liturgy, and then did it. That is, he started to face the wall altar, leading his parishioners into prayer. Scroll down here to see his explanation.

Unfortunately, and not unexpected, the mainstream media (MSM) has skewed the story which ultimately led to the skewering of the pastor by the diocesan administrator (Greenville is without a bishop at the moment).

Barbara Karalis has some very good, well referenced, in depth analysis of this entire situation. I lead you to her posts.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Photopost: Helpers of God's Precious Infants Prayer Vigil - Nov 15, 2008 with Msgr. Jeffrey Montforton

The Very Rev. Monsignor Jeffrey M. Montforton leads the Rosary outside of two abortion clinics where about 200 people braved pouring rain. As you will see, the rain adversely affected the quality of most outdoor pictures, including this one.

The current rector of Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, Monsignor Jeffrey Montforton led the November 15, 2008 Helpers of God's Precious Infants (HGPI) Prayer Vigil. The day began at Assumption Grotto Parish in Detroit with 7:30am Mass, celebrated by the monsignor. Mass was in the ordinary form, using the low, table altar.

It was concelebrated by a priest of the Order of Canons Regular of the Holy Cross, and order with offices on the grounds of the parish. The theme of the homily, delivered by Monsignor, was to stand up for life at the beginning, in the middle, and at the end.

People then made their way to nearby St. Veronica parish at 8:30 where they prepared for the next phase of the quarterly vigil: A Rosary procession. About 200 people processed in pouring, icey rain, about 4 blocks to 8 Mile where they prayed on the boulevard across from two abortion clinics.

You will see that the procession was done under the banner of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Here is the connection between this image of Mary and the pro-life movement.

At around 10:30am, about half the people returned to Assumption Grotto where the pastor, Fr. Eduard Perrone offered Benediction with the Blessed Sacrament. The lounge was packed with standing room only, along with a few stragglers in the hallway as people had refreshments and listened to HGPI-Michigan president Dan Goodnow, and Mary, one of the apostolates sidewalk counselors. Before the meeting began, Fr. Perrone stopped in and offered a few words of encouragement and another blessing.


I could not post all of the photos here. There are several ways to see the entire collection of photos.


The Helpers blog is not updated very often, but it is good to check in for notifications of future vigils which are sent to me as soon as they are available. I hope to add some of the content found on the tables following the vigil in time. I also make vigil info available here at Te Deum so you might want to bookmark this site, as well for future updates.
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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Gotta watch TV - EWTN's World Over Live - tonight!

It sounds like Raymond Arroyo will be talking about the USCCB meeting on World Over Live tonight. This will be a great episode. I've been hearing his commentaries in Ave Maria Radio archives with Teresa Tomeo and this ought to be very interesting. I wouldn't be suprised to see his periodic sidekick, Fr. Richard John Neuhaus there.

I won't say anymore than that. Just tune in or record it.

EDIT: Ok - I'll say this much....I believe in addition to the whole abortion discussion, there will be talk about the Catholic Campaign for Human Development and ACORN.

You can catch it online by going to and clicking the Television tab, then choosing one of the live options. It starts 8:00pm EST.

Go to the World Over Live homepage at EWTN to see other times that it will rebroadcast if you should see this too late. I think your last chance is 4:00pm EST Sunday.

UPDATE: Fr. Neuhaus was not a guest. However, Raymond did a taping with two bishops during the week that he played: Bishop Martino of Scranton and Bishop Naumann of Kansas City. Bishop Martino will be remembered for his own prophetic statement (as pointed out by Rocco Palmo):

In the public session, this past campaign cycle's most-forthright hierarchical voice said that his confreres would one day have to deal with their collective "reticence" on the question of Catholic politicians who support abortion rights in defiance of church teaching.

In the World Over Live segment, Raymond that comment was seen in replay along with those of other bishops. Since the show focused on personal finance and the economy in the first half, the discussion about pro-abort politicos and the CHD/ACORN matter came about half way through the program.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Saturday: Helpers of God's Precious Infants - Prayer Vigil

Just a reminder that Sacred Heart Major Seminary Rector, Msgr. Jeffrey Montforton will be at Assumption Grotto for the 7:30am Mass to kick off and lead the November 15, 2008 Helpers of God's Precious Infants prayer vigil.

We will then drive to St. Veronica's just off of Gratiot near 8 Mile and process to two nearby abortion clinics praying all decades of the Holy Rosary. This is not a protest nor is it confrontational. Rather, four times yearly, bewteen 150-300 people pray on the 8 Mile islands between traffic, led by a bishop or other prominent member of the diocese as Helper's sidewalk counselors provide alternative solutions to women seeking abortions. Most months we are blessed with "turns" as young women, some of them being forced, take advantage of the help offered to bring their babies into the world.

As was announced at the 7:30am Mass, we will be holding an Ordinary Form Mass in English, instead of the pastor's daily Traditional Latin Mass this Saturday only.

I don't know how successful I will be at getting photos of the event, given weather predictions, but I will try to get some of the Mass.

Keep in mind, that babies are aborted regardless of whether it is nice out or not. Rain, snow, and sleet do not deter abortions. Nor should it deter our being there. Dress warm, bring an umbrella or wear rain gear.

All are invited to return to Grotto following the procession, which typically ends around 10:00, where one of the priests will offer Benediction with the Blessed Sacrament, followed by refreshments and a followup meeting.

You can hear an interview of Msgr. Montforton with Teresa Tomeo of Catholic Connection online in the November 12, 2008 local segment. It may be a little later in the broadcast so just let it run.

Select Photoposts of Past Vigils:

I regret that I do not have photos from Bishop Boyea when he led the vigils. All of the Detroit bishops have been very supportive of HGPI-Michigan events and the number of people involved is growing. Helpers is always looking for people to join in the day-to-day effort of praying and sidewalk counseling. For contact info, visit the HGPI-Michigan blog.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Inoperable Brain Tumor Heighten's Faith of Young Naval Officer

I spotted this over at the New Liturgical Movement blog. Initially, I was going to make a post and ask you all to include this man in your prayers. However, upon visiting a new blog he set up in which he is logging his spiritual thoughts, I believe we should spend some time there learning from him. He is obviously acting on some solid graces.

His name is Philip Johnson. He is a 24 year old Catholic with a deep appreciation for good liturgy. The header on his blog, In Caritate Non Ficta, reads:

On October 15, 2008, after two years as an officer in the Navy, my life changed when I was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. Putting my concerns in the hands of the Blessed Virgin Mary and my trust in Our Lord Jesus Christ, I pray that I may be faithful to the Holy Catholic Faith and serve the Church for the rest of my life.

In this post, and in this post, he explains deeper his medical predicament.

As a Carmelite, what strikes me is his spirituality. In his November 13th post, Deriving Strength from the Eucharist, he starts out with the following (click the title link to read his entire post, which I recommend).

I have received many emails asking how I can be so "joyful" and content after learning that I have a brain tumor. There are many factors involved, including the fact that a severe illness forces one to focus on eternal life with God rather than "worldly kingdoms." For those who focus on this short earthly life, it is very difficult to deal with an illness over which one has little control. For those who focus on eternity, it is possible to see this life as a "stepping stone" to eternal happiness with Our Lord. After coming to this realization, suffering and death are not only easier to accept, but are welcomed with a deep desire to be united to Our Lord's cross and to spend eternity with Him in heaven.

To give us strength to live out our daily lives, Our Lord Jesus Christ has given us a great gift - the gift of Himself in the Blessed Sacrament. In the Most Holy Eucharist, Christ gives Himself to us - Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity - and I must credit this great gift as my source of strength in this difficult time in my life. As Catholic faithful, we can reap the spiritual benefits of this great gift by receiving frequent Holy Communion, and by adoring Our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar....[snip].
I will be praying for Philip Johnson and ask you all to do the same. However, use this opportunity to learn about the faith through this words. They feed the soul like a watering hole after a night in the desert.

He has entrusted himself to Jesus and Mary. May he find comfort in their Sacred and Immaculate Hearts, and lead many more to them.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Flash problem with my site?

A note dropped into one of my comboxes with the following and I would like some feedback from others. Are others seeing this problem. Some "yes" and "no's" will help me. I'm not sure what could be causing it, but if anyone has an ideas, let me know. Is it something that just started happening?


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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

The Church is Not Burger King - You can't "have it your way!"

Canon Lawyer Ed Peters has a new post up about 69 year old Maryknoll priest, Father Roy Bourgeois, who has been given an ultimatum: Recant support for women's ordination in 30 days or face excommunication.

In his reply to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, made public here, Father Bourgeois, wrote, in part:

I was very saddened by your letter dated October 21, 2008, giving me 30 days to recant my belief and public statements that support the ordination of women in our Church, or I will be excommunicated.

I have been a Catholic priest for 36 years and have a deep love for my Church and ministry.

When I was a young man in the military, I felt God was calling me to the priesthood. I entered Maryknoll and was ordained in 1972.

Over the years I have met a number of women in our Church who, like me, feel called by God to the priesthood. You, our Church leaders at the Vatican, tell us that women cannot be ordained.

With all due respect, I believe our Catholic Church’s teaching on this issue is wrong and does not stand up to scrutiny. A 1976 report by the Pontifical Biblical Commission supports the research of Scripture scholars, canon lawyers and many faithful Catholics who have studied and pondered the Scriptures and have concluded that there is no justification in the Bible for excluding women from the priesthood.

Setting aside many problematic things in his letter, there is one underlying thing here that goes terribly wrong: All those Scripture scholars, canon lawyers and many "faithful" Catholics are not the teaching authority of the Catholic Church. They do not make up the Magisterium.

Pray for this priest and all of the people being scandalized by his refusal to humbly submit to the teachings of the Church.

In that link I provided above that contains his letter are comments from many who encourage Father to press on. One suggests:

If he is excommunicated he will join a large band of angels. I am sure that God pays no attention to the vituperation of the earthly band of overly-fed, overly-pampered, overly-cautions synchophants called church hierarchy.

Stick to your guns, Roy ... fidelity to conscience is more important than that dog collar around your neck.

DuhThe Church is not Burger King!

He may very well join a large band of angels, but they won't be heavenly. The root of all sin is pride. There is a false humility that runs large among those who treat Church teachings with open defiance. Rather than exhibit true humility as Mary did when the Angel Gabriel appeared to her: "Let it be done unto me...", their mantra is "Your way long as it agrees with mine".

Is it any wonder why this group is often indifferent toward's the Blessed Mother or holds her in disdain? She is the new Eve who rejected pride in humble obedience to the will of God for her.

The defiant attitude we see belongs to the "either/or" crowd - the one that tries to pit peace and justice against humility and obedience; and the Iraq war against abortion. Mother Teresa proved that peace and justice worked right along side humility and obedience (and perhaps that is why she is held in disdain by some in this group). And, you can't compare nearly 50,000,000 lives of the unborn lost to several thousand in the Iraq war. All lives are valuable and the 50 million can't be ignored.

I have also found the propensity running high among them for using the priest scandal as an excuse to set aside authentic dialogue and reason. At the very least, the priest scandal is used to divert attention away from the subject at hand. Judas was a priest called by Jesus, yet God gave him, as he gives all, a free will. We will always have "Judas" among the priests because God does not force them to choose good over evil, virtue over vice, or holy boldness over nonfeasance.

Folks, there can only be one true North, where the compass points. One cannot go south and proclaim that it is north because he wants it to be so. Catholics need to understand that we rely on a compass to tell us where North is and that compass is the Catholic Church. Otherwise, we would have some people going East and want to proclaim it as North, while others are going West or South and want those to be proclaimed as North.

Jesus Christ is Truth. There can't be different versions of the truth any more than there could be different types of Jesus to pick and choose from. But, that is what some are trying to do - to treat the Church like Burger King where you can, "have it your way".

The fact that Father Bourgeois was ordained in 1972 says alot. Seminaries were malforming priests heavily by that time. Not only were things lacking in their formation and education, but there were perversions of Church teaching given to them. High on that list of missing or perverted teachings was Magisterial authority. For this, I have pity on them.

It's why you don't hear about it in many parishes today. It's why you don't hear much about sacrifice, or mortification, or taming the will. Those things all require humility and hard work. And, they go against the "doctrine" of challenging authority. They require us to set aside our own feelings about a matter and to make a leap of faith, especially where we do not fully understand something. Faith doesn't follow understanding. Rather, faith seeks understanding. If we had to understand everything before we humbly accepted it, there would be no purpose for faith. You can't pit 2000 years of experience against hippy-era, loophole theology. Christ didn't say the defiant hippy-era ideals would survive the gates of hell, but the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Is it any wonder why the Creed is inconspicuously missing in some parishes today?

Seminarians are now blessed with the internet where they can read important documents like Dei Verbum (Word of God), Veritatis Splendor (Splendor of Truth), and letters issued like those below pertaining to women's ordination. No matter how the loophole theologians stuff the seminary shelves with dissenting material while purging it of time-tested classics, these young men are venturing out and reading what the Church really teaches.

No longer can seminary rectors and professors filter and sanitize what seminarians are learning because the internet brings them documents in seconds. They can, and do, try to pass along loophole tacticts, but I would remind people that Christ taught with simplicity. When someone tries to introduce fancy complexities, you can be assured the Father of Lies is providing the fuel.

Seminaries are also turning as a new generation of priests and bishops emerge and take over - the JPII generation. Don't be surprised when a new, young priest comes to your parish and doesn't embrace the Burger King theology of the previous generation. Parishes are also beginning to experience the change as this generation's influence moves in.

We must always turn anger and disdain for dissidents into prayer. It is best to have pity for them in our hearts, to pray for their salvation, and for the salvation of those being led astray by them.

Related Links:

Read the two documents below on the Male only priesthood. In the original 1994 document, Pope John Paul II explains why the Church does not have the authority to ordain women. It's not a preferential issue. It is theologically deep and all arguments were considered. Some simply cannot accept the final decision of Rome. The subsequent letter by then Cardinal Ratzinger, makes it clear that it belongs to the deposit of faith. The door has been closed for over 10 years now. It's now a matter of humble acceptance of what has been handed down.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Francis Cardinal George Issues Statement on Behalf of all Bishops - Of Unity and Obstacles

Fresh from the USCCB website:

Cardinal George Voices Hope for Obama Administration, Points to Possible Obstacles to Our Desired Unity

BALTIMORE—Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), voiced hope for the Obama Administration but pointed to possible obstacles to our desired unity, in a Nov. 12 statement at the end of the annual fall assembly of the USCCB.

"The bishops of the Catholic Church in the United States welcome this moment of historic transition and look forward to working with President-elect Obama and the members of the new Congress for the common good of all," he said.

He said that "the unity desired by President-elect Obama and all Americans at this moment of crisis will be impossible to achieve," if the administration's policies increase abortions.

"Aggressive pro-abortion policies, legislation and executive orders will permanently alienate tens of millions of Americans, and would be seen by many as an attack on the free exercise of their religion."

"We express again our great desire to work with all those who cherish the common good of our nation," he added. "The common good is not the sum total of individual interests: it is achieved in the working out of a common life based upon good reason and good will for all."

Cardinal George's remarks follow.

STATEMENT of the President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

"If the Lord does not build the house, in vain do its builders labor; if the Lord does not watch over the city, in vain does the watchman keep vigil." (Psalm 127, vs. 1)

The Bishops of the Catholic Church in the United States welcome this moment of historic transition and look forward to working with President-elect Obama and the members of the new Congress for the common good of all. Because of the Church's history and the scope of her ministries in this country, we want to continue our work for economic justice and opportunity for all; our efforts to reform laws around immigration and the situation of the undocumented; our provision of better education and adequate health care for all, especially for women and children; our desire to safeguard religious freedom and foster peace at home and abroad. The Church is intent on doing good and will continue to cooperate gladly with the government and all others working for these goods.

The fundamental good is life itself, a gift from God and our parents. A good state protects the lives of all. Legal protection for those members of the human family waiting to be born in this country was removed when the Supreme Court decided Roe vs. Wade in 1973. This was bad law. The danger the Bishops see at this moment is that a bad court decision will be enshrined in bad legislation that is more radical than the 1973 Supreme Court decision itself.

In the last Congress, a Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) was introduced that would, if brought forward in the same form today, outlaw any "interference" in providing abortion at will. It would deprive the American people in all fifty states of the freedom they now have to enact modest restraints and regulations on the abortion industry. FOCA would coerce all Americans into subsidizing and promoting abortion with their tax dollars. It would counteract any and all sincere efforts by government and others of good will to reduce the number of abortions in our country.

Parental notification and informed consent precautions would be outlawed, as would be laws banning procedures such as partial-birth abortion and protecting infants born alive after a failed abortion. Abortion clinics would be deregulated. The Hyde Amendment restricting the federal funding of abortions would be abrogated. FOCA would have lethal consequences for prenatal human life.

FOCA would have an equally destructive effect on the freedom of conscience of doctors, nurses and health care workers whose personal convictions do not permit them to cooperate in the private killing of unborn children. It would threaten Catholic health care institutions and Catholic Charities. It would be an evil law that would further divide our country, and the Church should be intent on opposing evil.

On this issue, the legal protection of the unborn, the bishops are of one mind with Catholics and others of good will. They are also pastors who have listened to women whose lives have been diminished because they believed they had no choice but to abort a baby. Abortion is a medical procedure that kills, and the psychological and spiritual consequences are written in the sorrow and depression of many women and men. The bishops are single-minded because they are, first of all, single-hearted.

The recent election was principally decided out of concern for the economy, for the loss of jobs and homes and financial security for families, here and around the world. If the election is misinterpreted ideologically as a referendum on abortion, the unity desired by President-elect Obama and all Americans at this moment of crisis will be impossible to achieve. Abortion kills not only unborn children; it destroys constitutional order and the common good, which is assured only when the life of every human being is legally protected. Aggressively pro-abortion policies, legislation and executive orders will permanently alienate tens of millions of Americans, and would be seen by many as an attack on the free exercise of their religion.

This statement is written at the request and direction of all the Bishops, who also want to thank all those in politics who work with good will to protect the lives of the most vulnerable among us. Those in public life do so, sometimes, at the cost of great sacrifice to themselves and their families; and we are grateful. We express again our great desire to work with all those who cherish the common good of our nation. The common good is not the sum total of individual desires and interests; it is achieved in the working out of a common life based upon good reason and good will for all.

Our prayers accompany President-elect Obama and his family and those who are cooperating with him to assure a smooth transition in government. Many issues demand immediate attention on the part of our elected "watchman." (Psalm 127) May God bless him and our country.

Source page at USCCB

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Video of Francis Cardinal George of Chicago at opening of Bishops General Assembly

The other day, I provided an excerpt from the address given in this YouTube video of Cardinal George speaking to fellow bishops at the opening of the General Assembly in Baltimore. Reading it is one thing, but watching and listening is quite another. About 5 minutes in, he draws a hearty round of applause from the bishops. Watch it and you will understand just how perfectly he formed his argument for life.

Plenary Session Address by Cardinal George (text)

I have more coming, but have been dealing with computer problems all evening. I still have not been able to find video of the afternoon discussion on abortion that the bishops had. I have found reports of them, but I would like to see the video. If someone finds one on YouTube or the USCCB website, please let me know.

Here is a link to another Q&A session with reporters which took place around 6:00pm

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!

Recent Posts on Te Deum....

A cotillion with music from the 1700's (and some dressed for the period) was held as a fund raiser for Grotto's upcoming musical, The Heritance which will show in December. Once again, Father has the symphony being primed, along with the Assumption Grotto Choir. When auditions were held for last year's hit musical, Palla Eius, it was like pulling teeth to get people involved, especially the boys. This year, they couldn't get in the audition line fast enough. It's great fun and I pray everyone will duly support this with their presence and donations as they are solicited. I have more photos from the cotillion forthcoming.
I've been posting like mad and will probably continue for at least through the end of the USCCB General Assembly, which is over tomorrow. Here are some recent posts:
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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!