Editor’s note: this report originally appeared at the website of the Lepanto Institute. We have agreed to republish it to assist in sharing information about this important story.
The Lepanto Institute was recently asked by a supporter if the Salesian Missions was a “safe charity” to donate to. Not knowing the answer, Lepanto Institute conducted an investigation of the Salesian Missions’ program called “Life Choices,” and discovered that this program is quite similar to just about anything Planned Parenthood would publish. The program recommends masturbation, encourages condom use, employs emotionally dangerous “role-play” exercises, promotes contraception (including abortifacients like the morning after pill), and even provides contact information for teens to acquire condoms and contraception. According to the Salesian Missions’ website, over 375,000 kids have been exposed to this program. Click here for the full report in PDF format.
The Salesian Mission Office, under the guidance of the Eastern USA and Canadian Salesian Province, seeks to provide for the material and spiritual needs of poor and abandoned individuals, especially the young. The Salesian Missions belong to the order started by St. John “Don” Bosco, the Society of St. Francis de Sales, commonly referred to as “Salesians. Given what has been discovered, imagine what St. John Bosco would think with the order he founded contributing, not to the sanctification of youth, as was his own mandate, but to their corruption with these immoral programs.
In 2007, PEPFAR reported granting the Salesian Missions $56,599 for HIV prevention programs. Page 259 of this report shows that the Salesian Missions were responsible for providing information on condom use.
The Salesian Mission website verifies the implementation of the “Life Choices” program, focusing on reducing teen pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, substance abuse and violence.
The Life Choices website for the Salesian Life Choices program in South Africa indicates that the Salesian Life Choices organization is operating “under the Salesian priests and brothers.” In fact, one of the board members is a Salesian priest who is also the “Property Administrator of the Archdiocese of Cape Town, South Africa.”
The following information will come directly from the Salesian Life Choices, “Youth Friendly HIV Counseling & Testing” manual. In this 65 page manual, the word “condom” is mentioned 71 times, and always in promotion of condom use.
Page 9 of the Youth Friendly HIV Counseling and Testing manual makes the intention of the manual clear with regard to the promotion of condoms, saying that “it is crucial that counselors change the stigma around condom use.” Page 36 calls on teens to “condomise,” which means to use a condom every time they have sex, including “anal, oral, vaginal, male-to-male, and female-to-female.” Note the word “choice” on the pictures of condoms. On the same page, a note says they encourage youth to use condoms, “not based on moral reasoning,” but “purely good sense.” It also encourages dental dams for oral sex and finger condoms for mutual masturbation.
Page 37 explains that the Life Choices program includes condom demonstrations. The note goes so far as to instruct counsellors to inform teens where they can obtain condoms. There are many other references to condom use in this manual, but these examples suffice to show an immoral encouragement coming from a an organization attached to a religious order.
Now, we’ll switch to the Salesian Life Choices, “Dream 2 Be” manual for 9th grade peer-educators. In this manual, not only are condoms advocated for, but so also are abortifacient birth control pills, injectables, and the morning after pill. On page 16 is an extremely dangerous role-playing exercise where a 9th grade boy is paired with a 9th grade girl, and the two are supposed to have a discussion on whether or not to have sex, specifically stating that they should NOT discuss the morality of having sex outside of marriage. The danger in an exercise like this is that strong adolescent emotions will be evoked by this kind of role-play, potentially engaging immoral thoughts and out-of-class curiosity.But that’s not the worst of it.
On page 17, boys are encouraged to masturbate in order to satisfy sexual urges, and then to use condoms if they choose to have sex.
On page 18, in a discussion about HIV/AIDS, is a near pornographic image and young teens are told to “use condoms at all times.” There are many other serious problems with this manual, but these examples suffice to show the gravely immoral nature of this program.
Forgoing Catholic moral teaching altogether, rather than telling these kids that sexual intercourse is an act designed by God to be reserved for marriage, page 19 tells young adolescents that they should wait to have sex until “they are ready.” It also encourages them to use contraception, including abortifacients like the birth control pill and injectable contraception along with a condom. It also tells them where they can get condoms and contraception, and even suggests obtaining abortifacient “emergency contraception” if they ever have “unprotected” sex. On the next page are phone numbers indicating where to obtain contraceptives, including emergency contraception.
In addition to promoting contraception and abortifacients in their program manuals, The Salesian Life Choices program publishes a youth newsletter, distributing about 15,000 copies to targeted schools. Several of these newsletters include STRONG support for contraception, including abortifacients.
Salesian Life Choices’ youth newsletter #1 includes a flow-chart illustrating that using a condom can help to avoid contracting HIV/AIDS.
Youth newsletter #3 warns that “unprotected sex” or sex without a condom, increases the risk of contracting HIV/AIDS.
Youth newsletter #4 has an entire article devoted to encouraging the use of all forms of contraception, including abortifacients.
The website of the Salesian Missions indicates that, with funding from USAID, it hasexposed 375,000 to the Life Choices program.
The project of the Salesian Missions called “Life Choices” is clearly not in line with Catholic moral teaching, however this report illustrates an even greater issue that merits further attention. It should be noted that the Salesian Life Choices program was only made possible through the donations from and partnerships with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and the Global Fund.
This isn’t the first time Catholic moral teaching has been compromised by Catholic aid agencies after receiving funds from organizations that promote contraception and abortion. Catholic Relief Services (CRS) has been caught time and again implementing programs against Catholic moral teaching through the funding of such organizations. After receiving funds from PEPFAR, CRS implemented a condom-promoting video series and acontraception-promoting curriculum in Kenya. In Rwanda, CRS tested a Planned Parenthood-style sex education program with funding from USAID. The problem is obvious: Funding from agencies intent on spreading immoral behaviors always come with a cost.
At this time, it is clearly not safe to contribute funds to the Salesian Missions until they divorce themselves from funding provided by government and immoral organizations. This report serves as further evidence that the mandate of Pope Benedict XVI in his 2012 motu proprio, On the Service of Charity, MUST be obeyed. Pope Benedict said that the “Bishop is to ensure that charitable agencies dependent upon him do not receive financial support from groups or institutions that pursue ends contrary to Church’s teaching.” Let us pray that Catholic aid agencies follow this mandate, providing for authentic charitable works that pew-sitting Catholics can be proud to fund.
This report has been sent to both the Salesian Order and the Salesian Missions six days prior to publication and no response was received.
UPDATE: The Salesian Missions have responded with a categorical denial, even in the face of irrefutable evidence. You can read the response of the Lepanto Institute here.
Michael Hichborn is the president of the Lepanto Institute. Formerly, Michael spent nearly eight years as American Life League’s Director of the Defend the Faith project. He has researched and produced countless articles and reports on the funding of abortion, birth control, homosexuality and Marxism by Catholic Relief Services and the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD).
Michael holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Christendom College in Political Science and Economics and a Master’s degree in Education from American Intercontinental University.
Michael lives in Virginia with his wife, Alyssa, and their seven children.
I wish I were surprised.
You can write to Fr. Horacio López (sec. of Salesian Missions) to protest this obscenity at [email protected]. I wrote him in Spanish (he is in Argentina) but I am sure he also understands English or knows someone who does. Let him know that this gang of moral bandidos will be getting exacly $0 from you from now on till they return to the rancho.
Johnny, if you would be so kind as to compose a very brief form letter in Spanish with an English translation, I would like very much to post it to Catholic Action to help others who would like to protest this obscenity.
Sure. Here is the Spanish:
Estimado Padre López
He leído con interés recientes informes sobre las Misiones Salesianas y su participación en varias prácticas inmorales como la distribución de preservativos. Aunque he contribuido dinero a los Salesianos en el pasado, no pienso hacerlo más hasta que tenga pruebas definitivas que ya no continúan violando las prácticas católicas. Un simple desmentido verbal no me será suficiente dadas las pruebas de esta actividad que he visto. Hace falta que Uds. me den pruebas contundentes del abandono definitivo de esta política equivocada e inmoral.
And here is the translation:
Dear Father Lopez
I read with interest recent reports on the Salesian Missions and their participation in various immoral practices such as condom distribution. Although I contributed money to the Salesians in the past, I will not do so again until I have definitive proof they no longer continue violating Catholic practices. A simple verbal denial will not be sufficient given the evidence of this activity I’ve seen. You need to give me hard evidence of complete elimination of this misguided and immoral policy.
Thank you, sir.
I used to study with the Salesians in Argentina. They were not very orthodox at the time (bizarre christology mainly). But nowadays they cause scandal. It makes me sad and at the same time angry. I will write to Fr Horacio López for sure. Thanks Johnny!
They say lex orandi, lex credendi. Here you can see salesian argentinian priest celebrating mass in the open air (forget about the nice chapel that could fit hundreeds of students) at the Maria Auxiliadora Institut, at Buenos Aires. It seems to me that he is at the consecration, though everybody is sitting, including the priest.
I guess nobody there will protest, people get so use to scandal that they lost the hability to react.
I no longer give a single cent to any missions operated by a Novus Ordo religious order. My money only goes to the missions operated by the SSPX and FSSP apostolates.
This wretchedness reaches a new low in demeaning St Francis de Sales and his classic “Introduction to the Devout Life”. It takes his practical way to sanctify for the common man and turns it into more of the modern Salesian surrender to the ‘Manure of Modernism”
I wonder to what extent the “racism of low expectations” is involved. All very sad.
Why should anybody be surprised? Neither bishops nor popes have bothered disciplining anybody for who-knows-how-long? When Pope Benedict — ostensibly a theological conservative (if that means anything, anymore) — failed to rebuke publicly the president of the German bishops’ conference, who said on German television that Christ died not as the ultimate penalty for sin but “in solidarity with the people,” then all bets are off.
Nobody is going to like me saying this but I’ll say it, anyway: Catholicism is a joke. It’s really no better than mainline Protestantism (as opposed to conservative, evangelical Protestantism). It’s nothing but an institution run of, by and for the bishops and their favorites. All they care about is power, patronage and secular influence.
You can talk to me about “upon this rock I will build My church” and “the gates of Hell shall not prevail” until you turn blue. I suggest you read some of the OT prophets, like Ezekiel and Jeremiah, who railed against the corrupt religious leaders of their own day. Those leaders represented a faith that also was founded by God. I also suggest you read about the vision Pope Leo XIII had in the 1880s about Catholicism’s future. Do any of you seriously believe that Christ Himself would tolerate the shenanigans being perpetrated by “Catholic” leaders?
So what’s your solution, Joe? And if it’s such a joke, why do you haunt Catholic comboxes?
I want people to know the truth about what Catholicism has become. It’s not just Francis. It’s not just “progressive” clerics. It’s a self-reinforcing system that will not tolerate demands from the “little people” to return to orthodoxy because the clerical leadership believes it’s orthodox by its very nature. That, frankly, is what the conventional Catholic interpretation of Matthew 16:18 has led to.
So what’s my solution? There are only two: Fight or leave. I left because the Catholic Establishment (as reflected by its minions in the Apologetics-Industrial Complex) has no interest in true faith or accountability to God (and that includes the Pope Emeritus, per my citation above) . They have no idea how close they are to Hell. If you and others wish to fight, be my guest. I wish you the best of success.
This Church is storing up such divine judgement for itself that once that judgement breaks, even the devout will be shocked. This Church is not alone; the Protestants and Eastern Orthodox have some unpleasant surprises coming, as well. Just read the first three chapters of the Book of Revelation. Do you seriously think circumstances are any different, given human nature?
One other point: Apparently, the German bishops’ conference owns a pornographic publishing house in that country. If true, that’s obviously a major scandal. Yet how much pressure has been brought to bear from Rome for the conference to divest itself of that company?
I hear crickets from other commenters here Joe, so methinks you have pushed some buttons. I am on the same page with you regarding not wanting to endanger my soul by staying..indeed it was over 35 years ago that I got out seeing the weird changes taking place. Also had a couple priest friends that divulged to me the realities of the priesthood and what they were actually about…too many faggots in it for the free roof and meals to fill their tum tum…
I recall being in a rectory one day and two younger priests didn’t know I was waiting in the front room. They were hollering at each other about when Ms Brown would die and who was going to get the money. Another priest in the upper peninsula of Michigan made it very clear to his parishioners that his scotch and stereo hours were from noon to three o’clock..and no one dared to disturb this pathetic pubescent need to have his fun time. So if you were a young mom experiencing major depression after giving birth, I guess if you were considering a razor in your wrist, you’d end up bleeding to death on the front steps of the rectory while father did his scotch/stereo hour.
An uncle priest of my husband at that time had an easy gig in a Chicago parish of elderly…Father Ray had precious little to do with folks just biding their time to see their maker…but he did always have a fancy sports car and his sexatary, a gorgeous widow went away on long trips and out to dinner. I’d imagine as a sexatary she was also taking dicktation, but I am getting off the track. And frankly if a priest is going to sin it’s better a woman than a poor kid or gay.
In my own case, at birth I was not baptized immediately and my parents divorced when I was only 2. My real father wanted me to be baptized when I was four but the loony tunes priest told him I was an out of wedlock baby and could not be baptized…I guess it is truly a wicked god who tells anyone if you are born in deep dark Africa and never hear of me/GOD, that you will never make it to heaven..in my case, it wasn’t Africa but Detroit, (which now runs a close second to deep dark Africa) thanks to democraps who made Detroit into the armpit of the nation sixty years ago. In my case being a bastard baby conceived before the trip down the aisle meant that God did not judge me worthy to be baptized. Knowing my real father didn’t take crap he did manage to get the priest to baptize me after that.
Funny how the innocent have to eat crap they didn’t cause, isn’t it?
In my twenties we had a dear Franciscan priest friend who was pushed into the priesthood/seminary in the 8th grade by a pushy mother who no doubt thought, he’d be near the right hand of the father. Father John told me of the whacky stuff he was dealing with in that priesthood and he then got a dispensation to get out.
I attended a Catholic high school in Royal Oak, MI where the famed radio priest, Father Coughlin, said Mass every morn for we students. I don’t ever recall him talking about Scripture, JC or the apostles. But he sure as hell talked all the time about the evil of capitalism. I have learned since he had strong commie leanings..go figure. Meanwhile he lived like most never do…in the lap of luxury for his rectory was a like a movie set…unbelievably gorgeous.
I could go on and on about years of knowing and dealing with priests, but what good would it do. Like you Joe, my relationship with God is one on one and I meet him all alone on that final day..no priest need hear my petty sins, if I even have any, or ever did..most the sins that were in my life were of others sinning against me..no need to report when your own parents and then a husband sin against you is there? So Joe, I hear you loud and clear and I do agree that anyone who sticks around the church is asking for big trouble…best to get out and live your life as God wants you to and realize that he warned us in Revelation about the whore of Babylon and to extract oneself from it.. God’s word told me that ..I agreed!
You conveniently leave out any mention of the good and holy priests who humbly serve God by serving their fellow man.
Of course there will always be corruption in the Church, it has human beings as members. It is why Christ himself warned us of the wolves in sheeps clothing.
When confronted with evil, the only choice is to fight. We live in a fallen world, there is no where to run to avoid evil. If your misanthropy persuades you that you can become a church of one, you are letting your pride lead you to violate Christ’s own teachings. He built his church on Peter as the rock, knowing full well that Peter would deny him three times. But Peter repented, as we must urge our Bishops and clergy to do when they have need of it.
When the captain of the ship steers the ship into a storm, mutiny is a better choice than jumping into the sea.
Of course there will always be corruption in the Church, it has human beings as members. It is why Christ himself warned us of the wolves in sheeps clothing.
This is another stereotypical polemic used as an excuse to ignore the grotesque behavior sunshineinjuly talked about. How does this justify a pervert like Daneels remaining a priest, let alone an archbishop, let alone a cardinal, let alone a member of Francis’ inner circle — especially on family issues?!?!?
You conveniently leave out any mention of the good and holy priests who humbly serve God by serving their fellow man.
That comment ignores the fact that the Church fails or refuses to discipline the men who engage in the behavior (and worse) sunshineinjuly talked about. One bad apple can ruin a whole barrel of good ones, you know. Or as Jesus and St. Paul said, a little leaven permeates the whole dough. “Leaven,” in those contexts, means sin.
Do you have any idea how many people have lost their faith in God — not just in the Catholic Church but in God Himself — because of such behavior? Do you not think a holy, righteous God will not judge the practitioners of such behavior more strenuously than the devout can imagine?
Over the years since the pedo scandal emerged in Boston, I know of many parishes forced to close. They had no money to maintain them due to massive legal costs via the pedo cases. Many parishioners fought like hades to keep their churches but in the end the church won out and basically told those folks ‘too bad, so sad’. Why anyone would fight for a clergy that could care less baffles me to no end. As for the ‘good’ clergy that were not part of this, one wonders about the typical ‘old boys network’ where they, the good guys, cover for the bad ones. Finally, you are so right Joe, there are many who have lost their faith in God as well. Lucky for you and me, we have not lost our faith in God, but trusting mere men of the cloth is not required from Christ for us to do so. Further, the Lord says not a whit in scripture that we must uphold and pay for multi million dollar edifices to glorify God. Nor is it anywhere in Scripture that we must ingest a host at least 52 times a year. Most catholics have forfeited their minds and never learn that Christ’s message is esoteric. His message was not meant to uphold any group think or community. In fact, as I recall, He did say, “where you find two or three gathered in my name”
I think it’s very easy to focus on loyalty to a particular church, Catholic or otherwise. That’s human nature. The problems I and others have mentioned certainly aren’t unique to the Catholic Church. Every church has them, whether you define a church as a denomination or a congregation. But all too often, group loyalty overwhelms moral discernment. Again, that’s human nature.
Undoubtedly, there have been untold numbers of reverent, faithful priests and nuns. Undoubtedly, Catholicism has made major contributions to Western civilization. But just as one cannot define any institution entirely by its faults, one cannot use its strengths, assets or past successes to hide pervasive, long-standing problems.
Ultimately, Yahweh is a god of truth. Neither John the Baptist nor Jesus nor SS Peter and Paul nor any of the OT prophets shied away from “calling ’em as they saw ’em,” as it were. Isaiah wrote that “judgement begins in the House of God,” and Peter quoted him in his epistle. How much more true is that for any church that defines itself as the “One True Church” and claims to preach “the fullness of the Gospel”?
You nailed it. Christ and the Apostles instructed that only bishops who are firm, faithful to the faith and are blameless should be elected in the office of a bishop. Just because Jesus elected Judas doesn’t dispense the Popes from electing faithful bishops that uphold the teachings and behave exemplary. The Pope can’t elect and elevate perverts, unrepentent sinners, enemies of the faith and heretics that want to corrupt the gospel and remove people from the real faith by claiming Christ eleted Judas.The Pope and the bishops have a responsibility and the duty to guard the flock from false teachers.
Since Vatican II in the name of clemency and mercy heretics can go around and poison people’s faith without facing consequence. The Apostles vehemently instructed faithful believers not to tolerate heretics inside the Church nor to have anything to do with them for the sake of the believers and the church. According to the Apostles collegiality with heretics is betrayal to the church. Since 50 years + the liberal bishops play their cunning, diry games still the Popes and the conservative bishops don’t learn and fall into the Liberal’s trap, give in over and over again. Christ told us to be smart like snakes and not to be gullible. The taboo of criticism of the Pope also blocks the Conservative Catholics in their working too. The Apostles fighted fiercely heretics, named and shamed them and banned them from Church. Vatican II puts collegiality, mildness, tolerance, compromise, dialogue and so called unity even a fake one above truth. Therefore the Catholic Church today almost never uses Church discipline, excommunication even when false teachers deceive people into apostasy for not to appearing unloving and harsh. Since Vatican II all Popes are in rebellion against the word of God by refusing to excommunicate apostates and by believing tolerating heretics and unrepentant sinners makes them wiser and more merciful than the bible. This is wrong on many level. Jesus doesn’t want his bride and the Gospel to be polluted, corrupted and hijacked by heretics. Joseph, I sense that you really loved the Catholic Church therefore you don’t accept lame excuses. The smoke of satan has entered the church and truth doesn’t matter in the Vatican anymore. Without the intervention of God the Catholic Church will collapse due to wordliness, false compromises and false unity.
Bravissimo, Gian Luca! Would that someone like you becomes the next Pope. I mean that sincerely.
sunshineinjuly, I will keep you in my prayers. If you want to contact me, send an e-mail to [email protected].
Well staying, fighting to regain the Catholic Church back is the only option for faithful Catholics. The heretics and Counterfeit Catholics should go and leave the Catholic Church and not the faithful ones. I don’t understand why faithful Catholics always run away when it gets tough? Why leave the field to the anti-Catholics and allow them to hijack the Catholic Church instead of resisting them? The passive, lethargic, fatalistic attitude, conflict avoidence of conservative Catholics and blind obedience to the Pope played into the hands of the liberal faith and Church destroyers. The weakness and the lack wisdom of conservative Catholics made the liberal Pseudo-Catholics powerful inside the Church.
Gian Luca, I once thought as you did. I thought that staying and fighting was the only solution. But I starting thinking about whether I wanted my possible children to receive a Catholic religious education (I’m a single man who has never married and has no children). I starting thinking about pushing back against the nonsense being taught and telling my kids that a lot of that teaching is rubbish. And what if they say, “But Daddy, if it’s rubbish, why are you sending me there?” And they would be right.
I also no longer believe in the Catholic interpretation of John 6: 25-69 that serves to support the Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation. Since transubstantiation is the mark of Catholic belief, I would be lying to myself if I remained Catholic.
There’s a time to fight and there’s a time to leave. When a faith that calls itself the “One True Church” that teaches “the fullness of the Gospel” has veered so far from such truth that it effectively allies itself with Satan, the time to fight is over.
I am responsible for my eternal soul, which would be in peril if I remained in the Catholic Church.
“I also no longer believe in the Catholic interpretation of John 6: 25-69 that serves to support the Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation. Since transubstantiation is the mark of Catholic belief, I would be lying to myself if I remained Catholic.”
So you choose not to fight because you have lost the faith. You have set yourself up as your own Pope, and will decide on matters of faith and morals on your own. You are like Luther, a true Protestant.
This is why you don’t fight.
For those of us with faith, who believe in the words of Christ, fighting is the only option. Evil must be fought, it certainly can not be avoided. Not in this fallen world.
Mary and Joseph, ora pro nobis.
FranklinWasRight, I have not lost the faith. I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and Earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, (as the ultimate atonement for human sin, btw) and was buried according to the Scriptures (which the Catholic hierarchy disregards or ignores); he descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again; he ascended into heaven, is seated at the right hand of the Father, and will come again to judge the living and the dead.
The Catholic Church has lost the faith, far earlier than anyone here can guess. How can I call myself a Catholic if I no longer believe in one of Catholicism’s central tenets?
So you choose not to fight because you have lost the faith. You have set yourself up as your own Pope, and will decide on matters of faith and morals on your own. You are like Luther, a true Protestant.
That is the stereotypical polemic used by Catholics when faced by legitimate challenges. Catholicism has replaced faith in the Triune God with faith in the institution. Blind deference and obedience to prelates, regardless of whether they’re corrupt, replaces deference and obedience to a holy, righteous God Who condemns those who take His name in vain (i.e, use it as a testimonial for pet agendas, for one thing, like Francis and the hierarchy). Those who offer such obeisance to corrupt leaders will die in their sins.
I obviously agree that there’s a lot of evil that has made its way into the Church. But your overly simplistic view of what the solution is doesn’t help anyone here.
The Church has been through heresies and crises in the past. We know the depths of depravity that it has sunk to at various times. Some of it we may never know. And yet, it remains.
The Church, like those men and women it was instituted to aid in the pursuit of salvation, will always have a human element, and thus, always be infected with sin. The perfect have no need of a redeemer.
This website exists not only to inform people of what has gone wrong with the Church, but to remind them of what made it great. I will admit that of late, we’ve done more of the former and less of the latter, and I’ll take the blame for that.
But I will never abandon the Catholic Church, and at the same time, I will never defend the actions of its prelates which I find indefensible. I have yet to find sufficient cause to believe that because men do evil in the name of our faith and our God, our faith and our God are therefore no longer deserving of our respect, trust, or faith.
If you’re not here to recruit people to your way of doing things, then why do you come back, again and again, to Catholic comment boxes? You’ve been doing this as long as I’ve been online, and that’s been a long time.
You have a right to be angry, hurt, and scandalized by what has been done, and what hasn’t been done about those doing the worst of it. You don’t have a right to leave, because error has no rights. And you don’t have a right to try to drag others down with you.
If you’ve really abandoned Catholicism, I’m sorry for you, and for your soul. But let those of us who believe it’s worth fighting for continue doing so without you stirring up dissension in our ranks. We have enough working against us as it is.
Steve, see the comment I posted on Sunday below sunshineinjuly’s second on this thread.
Perhaps Franklin was Right can tell us how to do the impossible.
Methinks it is time to read Revelation 16 once again on the Whore of Babylon. Once you read that and see the connection to the all powerful RC church, the wealthiest entity on the planet, your eyes might start seeing the truth. I suggest you also indulge yourself in another eye opening history lesson on the church and how what is happening today points to another great disaster coming down the road…I think you will be more than horrified to see the Church’s past history in its dealing with human family. No small thanks to the blood thirsty boys, part of the Vatican/W of B. I thought I already knew the history but precious litte. And we know that hugh scandal out of Ireland this past year revealing the decades of torture and rape of children in Catholic orphanages at the hands of what other….drum roll now…the Jesuits, the very order which this pope is a member of…put the puzzle pcs together kiddies!
I’m also struggling with doubts since I see that the Catholic Church after Vatican II removed herself from her teachings to a troubling degree. My point is there is no Church that is without any errors.
I wanted to leave but where should I go and why should faithful Catholics not restore Catholism again? Joseph, I like your sharp intellect and common sense. Before the Catholic Church or the hierarchy lost her faith, she lost common sense and wisdom. In the Catholic Church there is lot’s of ivory tower theology but no common sense. Not how faithful a bishop or priest is, is important but how many titles and Ph.D before his name he can show up is crucial. Since Vatican II the Catholic Church wants to prove the world how scientific and modern she is. So the Church adopted bible criticism, the so called historical-critical methods in analyzing and studying the bible and its textual content. With atheistic and biased methods the bible and God are examined, interpreted and then the Popes and the Vatican wonder why the faith is dying in the Church and among Catholics. The Church lets the clergy and the scholars to be educated by professors that deny God and are full of disdain for the bible. There are is a joke that says: You go as a believer to the faculty of theology and leave it as an atheist and still the Catholic Church insists to stay on this wrong track.Catholics and the Church suffer from inferiority complex towards the modern world. Pope Francis is the best of example of this complex. His self-esteem isn’t rooted in Christ but in his display of his so called humbleness, popularity and the approval of the world. He needs the approval of man because he has no love for the Church.
Gian Luca, your words are perhaps the most eloquent and accurate description of what’s happening in the church than anything I’ve seen.
Let us not forget you cannot expect anything good to come out of any organization that has a significant number of gays in it. Last fall I attended a seminar at our local St Mary’s here in CT which was called the Theology of the Body…Now I left the church about 35 years ago knowing the sick stuff that I was seeing and hearing in the seventies.
There was no way I was going to subject my five children to the loads of crapola coming from Priests…so this course in the fall of 2014 sounded interesting to me and I figured that maybe the church had opened up it’s empty mind on the real nature of heterosexual relationships, i.e. marriage. For when I was married in the 60’s the Cana classes we took were a joke and no preparation for a truly sound, loving, beautiful sexual relationship. I recall then what they said was permitted, and it was sick to me then and is sickening to me now. Obviously an all boy network of either celibate or gay men has no right nor even the knowledge to presume to know of a woman’s sexuality. And if they think they do, they’re arrogant to the max.
So this course last fall which I thought would focus on some new thoughts on marriage and human sexuality, never did.
I found that the theology of the body had nothing to do with it, Instead it was all about the relationship of the Father and Son.
The really weird part of it, was after seeing six videos for six weeks on the Theology of the Body I was convinced that the church has either totally lost it or is one hugh corporation hell bent on making the RC church an all boy gay network for their description of the father/son relationship was bound up with human sexuality.
Thus one left that six week seminar thinking the father/son duo were united in a 24/7/365/eternal orgasm which never ends. I was sickened at the fact that this is what is being taught now.. For a church that for eons said that sex was a big no no and that even in marriage one should not have any passion or ecstacy in the marital bond, it was really a shocker to hear that the father/son are eternally embraced sexually together. Thus giving and even sicker twist to this notion…being gay is one thing but when a father and his son join as one, I find that totally abhorrent and disgusting, if not downright demonic.
I find that few catholics even know what is being taught these days to their young children. The series called GIL or Growing in Love is no more no less than a commie ploy to tear down children’s innocence and to get them to have sex earlier and earlier…it all fits in with the present commie Common Core which is hellbent on destroying both bodie’s and minds. Don’t get me started on Commie common core..whole other battle!
I’m just saying this church is on the same page with the NWO and anyone who can’t see it yet, really needs help. Like Ann says, get your money the hell out of banks/investments and stop paying taxes…I say in addition to that stop putting your dollars into sunday baskets which are only helping to pay for all those pedo cases which are close to $2,000,000,000. 00
When I first heard Geo W Bush speak of the NWO I knew we were in for some really stinky stuff..a new world ODOR, but I had no idea at the time, the church would be connected with it, but now it is so obvious when you know the church is reaping millions and millions of our tax dollars to bring in refugees to destroy our language, borders and culture. Don’t know about you but Christ told me to help widows and orphans in their need but he never said, you must feed, clothe, house, educate able bodied strong men of 18 -35 years of age, some of whom are possibly terrorists, but the majority at any rate having a so called religion which is hellbent on murdering catholics/Jews.
The Church is God’s, as are all things and persons in her. Gay or not. If the entire priesthood for all the Church’s history had been gay, that would damage the sacraments not at all. Because the sacraments, though affected by human behaviour, are primarily and always sanctifying actions *of Christ*, Whether a priest is a Saint (as has happened) or a Satanist (as has also happened) is immaterial to the effect of the sacrament on the recipient.
Besides, why single out gays – how is the Church any more harmed by having gay members, than by having murderers in it, or perjurers, or liars, or bigots, or cowards, or members flawed in a thousand other ways ? The Church is harmed by none of them, gay or not. All that the sins of her members can do is, obscure her character and mission – they cannot lessen or damage either, for both have been conferred on her by Christ. They are as fresh as they were when He conferred them both on her, and always will be.
To say that “no good can come out of” her, is to deny that Christ works through her; and, she is not a purely human society, but a society both human and Divine. We can and should and must expect great good to come from the Church (in whom some members are gay); not because the human members are good (we are not) – but because Christ is Good.
Surely. the worse things get, the more imperative it is to stay. Precisely *because* things are bad, we ought to stay. It is desertion not to. And so unfair to the Church. The Church was the One Immaculate Bride of Christ in the 1st century; before the Protestant Revolt; during it; after it; before Vatican 2; after Vatican 2; now; and the Catholic Church always will be the One Immaculate Bride of Christ, no matter what. For there is absolutely *nothing* that men or devils or death or Hell or any other power in all creation can do to change that. The Church is totally in the hands of God – she will never not be – so she is totally safe, regardless of what may happen. All we have to do, is be faithful to what God has given us.
A bridge that stands when a cat crosses it once may be strong – or it may not. If the bridge can stand years of trains thundering across it – it is probably strong. A faith that can stand up only to light pressure, but collapses under really heavy pressure, is surely not one to have. If we leave the Church because of human depravity, human folly, or any other failing, how can we be said to “believe in the Church” ? The Church always has the Authority of Christ behind her, no matter what men (including us) do to her; if Christ “loved the Church, and gave Himself for her”, as St Paul says He did, then that cannot stop being true. So it is true now. But if Christ, Who is God Incarnate, Loves the Church, how can it be right to leave her ? The Church is no worse off now than at the Arrest of Christ or at His Denial by Peter. It never has been. It never will be – that is a certainty.
As for Biblical criticism: like so much in life, it is what one makes of it.
The Catholics, the Orthodox, the Protestants?!? All washed up, all lost, all right there knocking insistently on Hell’s door! Scary. It’s comforting to know there will be at least one new citizen of Heaven, Joe; I mean that fellow you admire in the mirror while shaving every morning.
Johnny, here’s what I mean: Mere denominational affiliation guarantees nothing in terms of salvation! (Yes, I know Catholics don’t view their church as a “denomination,” but you get the idea). The attitude many Catholics have about Catholicism is no different than the attitude many Jews during the First Century had about Judaism: We’re in the “in” group because God chose us! (Or, in the case of Catholics, we’re in because Jesus founded our church.). It’s a distinction without a difference, really. Too many Protestants (especially theologically conservative ones) and Eastern Orthodox think, “We’ll at least we’re not like those heretical apostates in Rome!”
Why did Jesus tell the religious leaders of His day that the prostitutes and tax collectors will enter Heaven before they do? Did prostitutes and tax collectors have any kind of theological background or training, let alone the kind that those religious leaders had? Of course not! So what’s the difference? The prostitutes and tax collectors had enough confidence in Jesus’ message and identity not only to embrace Him as their divinely appointed savior but, as a result, to repent and change their lives! Where do you see Francis or any of his minions — or, for that matter, JPII or Benedict during their tenures — preach the necessity of repentance?
Catholicism has become far too infatuated with itself, its hierarchy, its history, its secular influence, its prestige, its very identity, and has lost its first love, as it were. So, frankly, have other churches. Can you tell me whether that attitude pleases God?
“Mere denominational affiliation guarantees nothing in terms of salvation!” Procul dubio, sed extra ecclesiam nulla salus. Or, as St. Augustine rather forcefully put it, “No man can find salvation except in the Catholic Church. Outside the Catholic Church one can have everything except salvation. One can have honor, one can have the sacraments, one can sing alleluia, one can answer amen, one can have faith in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and preach it too, but never can one find salvation except in the Catholic Church.”
Well, when St. Augustine lived, how many other forms of Christianity were there besides Catholicism? I sincerely doubt that there were as many forms as today. Moreover, how theologically orthodox was Catholicism at that time, compared to today?
Regardless, the logical consequence of your argument is that the Catholic institution supplants Jesus as the ultimate mediator of salvation — and that Jesus cannot save people who become Protestants or Eastern Orthodox. IOW, His blood poured out on Calvary to redeem humanity is not enough (which demonstrates total ignorance of the Levitical priesthood’s fundamental meaning). That’s saying the exact same thing that the Judaizers said during St. Paul’s day: Gentiles cannot convert to Christianity unless they first became Jews.
The Catholic Church doesn’t supplant Him, it *becomes* Him. The “Mystical Body of Christ” is more than just a metaphor. The Church is His bride, and the two are one flesh, and through her union with Him, salvation comes to the world in every baptistry, in every confessional, on every altar, etc.
This isn’t rocket surgery.
Steve, if you want to continue this discussion, contact me offline. Johnny, ditto. Steve should have my e-mail address.
Steve beat me to the punch (just below). I was as surprised as he to see you use the word “supplant”; most third or fourth grade catechism students in my Catholic grammar school 60 years ago would have thought ‘Sister’ was playing favorites if she put such an easy question to one of the kids.
Your difficulty, Joe, is that you have set yourself up as pope and council all rolled into one. You know that as well as I do, and I’d wager money the thought keeps you awake at night. That’s good. That’s your God-given conscience telling you to pull back and stop being so cocksure of yourself. Listen to it.
Steve, surely you read Ann Barnhardt’s blog and her frequent contributions. thus you would know what she says happened to the church. I agree with her…the commie/homosexualist infiltration began in the sixties…from my standpoint and having known many priests back then, I think it began even before Ann’s stated decade. It makes no sense to criticize other folks for speaking truth…or are you on the leftist/liberal side of the spectrum? My Lord has always told me to tell the truth no matter how politically incorrect it is. Like Ann has said, ‘nice’ isn’t it where it’s at…too many of us have been taught to be ‘nice’ and it’s all major BS.
I’m never entirely sure what you’re trying to say, sunshine, but I will say this: no matter how awful individual members of the clergy may be, it does not logically follow that the faith as a whole is invalid.
Nowhere that I can see did I ever say that faith as a whole is invalid…those are your words, not mine. One does not prove one’s faith by attending church..that is totally absurd. I have known many Catholics for over a half century who were what I called cafeteria catholics..in my book they aren’t truly RC. Because I validly point out truths of my own experiences with clergy for almost 70 years now and having attended a Catholic college..and having been a very involved Catholic for too many years… seeing all that I saw and experienced is what has formed my conclusions. Like Joseph says in many of his posts above, this for starters, “So what’s my solution? There are only two: Fight or leave. I left because the Catholic Establishment (as reflected by its minions in the Apologetics-Industrial Complex) has no interest in true faith or accountability to God (and that includes the Pope Emeritus, per my citation above) . They have no idea how close they are to Hell. If you and others wish to fight, be my guest. I wish you the best of success.” You can’t say it any better than what Joseph says above…again, nowhere in Scripture does it say that we must revere clergy or a pope over God Himself. Joseph again shows clarity when he says this here. ” But all too often, GROUP LOYALTY overwhelms MORAL DISCERNMENT. Again, that’s human nature.”
“Undoubtedly, there have been untold numbers of reverent, faithful priests and nuns. Undoubtedly, Catholicism has made major contributions to Western civilization. But just as one cannot define any institution entirely by its faults, one cannot use its strengths, assets or past successes to HIDE PERVASIVE, LONG STANDING PROBLEMS” Amen. Joe you have the clearest mind and most honesty in your posts!
Yes, sunshine, one proves one’s faith by attending church if one is Catholic. It’s one of the precepts of our Faith. And the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass — as well as the Eucharist transubstantiated therein — is the source and summit of the Christian life.
So you actually believe that Christ wants us to feed the beast that is doing evil….not just pedophilia, but the millions of tax dollars the church gets every week from bringing in the very people who want our heads on platters? The beast is already getting millions $$$ from us—and they have destroyed untold numbers of children’s and family’s lives, and you would suggest that it is my duty to uphold that and pretend that the mass makes all well and good. I would go for that if I were bonkers!
Somewhere in the catholic files of my mind, I recall Christ chasing the money changers out of the temple. What on earth do you think is going on today…that mere little temple was nothing compared to today……what do we have today but the largest business in the world in the form of the RC church…now I don’t about you, but I do not have a large enough whip to go after faux religious in skirts who have hugh stock holdings in birth control companies or defense companies, but what I do have is the power of the strings and no way would you get me to sin by having me put money into a Sunday basket to pay off pedo legal cases. It is not my duty to aid/abet the lousy crumb bums who thought that they could get away with murder…at least the murder of children’s souls. And further to allow such men in skirts to live a bachelor life while telling the rest of us how to live ours. I don’t take kindly to nincompoops who have the arrogance to think they have a closer contact to the Lord than I do. Been my experience they have little contact with God, but I have had a lifetime of God telling me to trust my own mind and never to trust the minds of men stuck on their egos. Scripture backs me up on that one!
Perhaps it takes 3/4 of a century on this earth to gain some perspective..as well as real time experience dealing with the fakers of the world..and that would include none other than the RC church. Looking to learn the truth and reality of the Vatican’s finances, look no further…loads of facts/figures here to peruse. If you can show me where Christ said this is where our riches lie, pls take me to the book/chapter and verse. The Christ I know is as far away from this church as the man in the moon is to isis.
I see no mention of having to attend an earthly institution or edifice when Matthew 6:5 says this here. “When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. 6″But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you” So you see it isn’t really about a church game or group think, but being alone with your Father and commiserating alone with Him.…
You make the mistake then of separating Scripture from Tradition — the latter itself a scriptural imperative (2 Thes. 2:15).
I’m not going to debate the claims of Catholicism here with you, since you voluntarily left the Church and her fullness of truth. But we as faithful Catholics take these things as a given — the divine origins of the Church, the papacy, the priesthood, confession, the Eucharist, etc.; the parallel importance of both Scripture and Tradition; the fact that the canon of the New Testament was, itself, compiled under ecclesiastical authority, etc.
You’re describing the religious ethos of non-denominational Protestantism, not Catholicism. You’re no longer a Catholic. You don’t get to redefine it according to your whims. So you’re welcome here as a visitor, an outsider, and a prodigal son — if you intend to learn and have an interest in what’s being offered from within.
But if your goal is to simply show up in the comments and talk about why you leaving the Church was the right thing to do, I’ll have to ask you to leave. Our readers have other issues they’re grappling with. Having each discussion thread drawn off track by people who are happily ex-Catholic works at cross purposes with what we’re trying to do here.
Well being an anti-Catholic heretic and an apostate are according to the Popes of Vatican II no reason for discipline or excommunication. Being too Catholic and too faithful is a THE REASON to be mercilessy persecuted and to be under Apostolic Visitation. According to the Pope, the Vatican the Franciscans of the Immaculate, the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate are worse than the gay lobby inside the Church, worse than the bishops that covered up sexual abuses and worse than all the rotten pro-homosexual, immoral communities and bishops.The Catholic Hierarchy has lost her moral compass. Even Pope Benedict harmed the Church by refusing to clean up the Vatican from heretics. Now Pope Francis takes it to another level, he not only tolerates but actively supports heretics that want to maime the Catholic Church. It’s shame that the Popes, not only Pope Francis who is a disaster for the Church, but also Pope Benedict are so indifferent towards the salvation of Catholics. It’s a shame that they allow heretics to poison believers with heresies and to remove them from the Gospel. Pope Benedict seems not to be the protecter and upholder of the Catholic faith like he was often potrayed. He let the Church down and allowed the wolves to take over the herd. Today the lust of self-destruction inside the Catholic Church is rampant and mind-boggling.
Bravissimo, Gian Luca!
“government and immoral organizations”
You repeat yourself, Michael.