It's official. The Catholic Knight is retired.  I'm hanging up the helmet and passing the torch. There will be no more articles, no more commentaries, no more calls to action. THIS BLOG IS CLOSED. I've spent a very long time thinking about this, I believe the time has come, and is a bit overdue.  I want to thank my readers for everything, but most especially for your encouragement and your willingness to go out there and fight the good fight. So, that being the case, I've spend the last several weeks looking for bloggers who are fairly active, and best represent something akin to the way I think and what I believe.  I recommend the following blogs for my readers to bookmark and check on regularly. Pick one as your favourite, or pick them all. They are all great..... In His Majesty's Service, THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT

Monday, December 31, 2007

Mike Huckabee Addresses Anti-Catholic Accusations

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: This blogger boldly asserts the mainstream media is attempting to drive a wedge into the social-conservative coalition in the Republican Party for the purpose of helping the democratic presidential nominee in the 2008 election. This media attempt has become so obvious that presidential candidate Mike Huckabee can't hardly get a mainstream press interview anymore without being bombarded by religious questions from mainstream news journalists. Some of these journalists have tried to use Huckabee's recent speech at Tel-evangelist John Hagee's Cornerstone Church as an opportunity to pit Catholics against Evangelicals. Hagee, like many Evangelical pastors, has a history of anti-Catholic rhetoric, and though Huckabee never made any anti-Catholic comments himself, the media has tried to smear him with that label using guilt by association. Unfortunately, many Catholics took the bait. Governor Huckabee was disturbed after learning of this, and decided to address the matter directly via 'Catholic Online'...
DEACON KEITH FOURNIER: Your interview with Catholic Online is one the highest read stories in our history.

However, shortly after its publication, you spoke at a Church in Texas, on a Sunday morning. Of course, there is nothing unusual about that.

What caught the attention of many of our readers and viewers was a concern that the Pastor of the Church has written some material that insults the Catholic Church and has been labeled by some as anti-Catholic.

Our readers understand that you, like all of the candidates, are running for the Presidency. In other words, we know that you seek to govern the whole Nation and, of course, you must reach out to all Americans.

However, there has, unfortunately, been a history of anti-Catholicism in this Nation that we all love.

Your campaign quickly noted the presence of Catholics in many of the top positions of your campaign staff. However, the issue and the concern raised by your visit, has not gone away.

Would you comment upon your visit and on your views concerning Catholics in America?

GOVERNOR HUCKABEE: “I am invited to speak at thousands of diverse venues each year. My willingness to address a group says nothing about whether or not I agree with every tenet, policy or belief espoused by a group.

To be honest, I have never thought about having “a view” about Catholics in America.

Rather, I have enjoyed strong, personal relationships with many Catholics over the years and I would hate to think about my life without those relationships having been there.

For more than a decade, I marched side-by-side with Catholic Bishops in Arkansas’ annual March for Life.

Throughout my years as Lieutenant Governor and Governor, I enjoyed a very close relationship with leaders and members of the Catholic Church in Arkansas.

My pro-life record is largely the result of this close working relationship.

My relationships with Catholics predated my entry into politics. When I was pastoring a Baptist church in Texarkana, I had the opportunity to work closely with the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word at the St. Michael Hospital near my church. I was always welcomed warmly by the sisters when I visited the sick.

As a pastor, I held joint services with my neighboring Catholic congregation, was invited to speak in Catholic churches for special services, and had regular breakfast meetings with the Bishop of the Arkansas Diocese, Bishop Peter Sartain, now in Illinois.

Those early years of ministry showed me the value of working with caring people whether or not every one of our religious tenets line up exactly.

In short, if I held any animosity toward Catholics, I don't think Justice Scalia would have ever taken me up on my invitations to go duck hunting.

As I mentioned before, many of my top-level staff and closest advisors are Catholic, including my national campaign manager, national campaign director, my policy advisor and my campaign’s chief operating officer.

read the full interview here

Mit Romney Approved $50 Abortions!

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Here we have Mit Romney's biggest problem. He claims to be pro-life, but his record shows quite the opposite. Romney claims that his views have "evolved" over the years, and now he believes he is strongly pro-life. Well, that's nice Mit, but when you've got a record like yours, it's a little hard to believe. Perhaps if Romney ran for a lower political office first, to PROVE that he's turned over a new leaf, we might be able to consider him for president at some later date. As it stands right now, however, actions speak louder than words...
(Newsmax) - Mike Huckabee attacked Republican presidential rival Mitt Romney for his past support of abortion, his antigun policies and his false claims about Huckabee’s record as Arkansas governor.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Romney “comes on and says he's pro-life and yet he signed a bill that gives a $50 co-pay for an elective abortion in his state's health care plan,” Huckabee told host Tim Russert on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday....

read full story here

Here we have a clip of Mit Romney, as recently as 2002, defending his "pro-choice" ("pro-abortion") beliefs. Curious that Romney's beliefs about abortion would "evolve" to a supposed pro-life position at about the same time he decides to run for president in a national election. To 'The Catholic Knight' it would appear that Mit Romney's beliefs about abortion seem to morph easily depending on what kind of an election he's running in. When he runs as a Republican in a liberal state like Massachusetts, he's strongly 'pro-choice,' but when he's running in a national election, where the Republican expectations are more conservative, his views "evolve" (his word not mine) into a pro-life position....

Mike Huckabee & The Social-Conservative Takeover of the GOP

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: As we enter the primary season, I frankly, don't know what's going to happen. I do know, however, how we got here. Six months ago the assumed GOP presidential nominee would be Rudy Giuliani, or perhaps Mit Romeny. Both men were well liked by the fiscal-conservative power-brokers in the Republican Party. Rudy Giuliani had good name recognition, was well liked by the general public after the events of 9-11, and it was generally thought that he would be the best candidate to take on Hillary Clinton in the general election. Mit Romney was less known, but it was generally believed he might serve as a good consolation candidate for the social-conservatives should things not work out with Giuliani. Conventional wisdom dictated that if Giuliani won the nomination, he might tap Mit Romney to run for vice president on the ticket, so as to become a 'bone' for the social-conservatives to 'chew on,' due to Giuliani's 'pro-choice' position on abortion. Political pundits on CNN and FoxNews were seriously pondering the possibility that the "religious right" had "matured" beyond their strict demands for a pro-life presidential candidate in the Republican Party. Money quickly flowed into the Giuliani and Romney campaigns, and Giuliani especially enjoyed mostly positive media attention.

Now, here we are six months later. Mit Romney struggles to hang on to his lead in the polls. Rudy Giuliani isn't even on the radar screen in state polls, except in Florida, which he now concedes that he might lose. In fact the only poll Giuliani scores well on is the nation-wide poll, which really doesn't matter, because that's not how this country selects presidential candidates. Basically the nation-wide poll is just a popularity contest, based almost entirely on name recognition. It doesn't factor into the nomination process of political parties during their conventions, nor does it factor into the electoral college during the actual presidential election. So now, as of the end of December 2007, the man of the hour is a formerly obscure GOP candidate by the name of Mike Huckabee, who's campaign up until recently, operated on a shoestring budget. He's been outspent by Mit Romney $20 to $1, and yet Romney can barely stay neck-and-neck with him in Iowa. Huckabee's got him beat in South Carolina, and it looks like Huckabee is within striking distance of Giuliani in Florida. As it stands right now, for all the millions both Giuliani and Romney have spent, the only stronghold Romney can claim is New Hampshire. As for Giuliani, he can't even guarantee he'll win a single primary, not even in Florida, the ONLY Southern state that is supposed to be friendly to him. How did this happen? And what of this man called Mike Huckabee?

Six months ago, the fiscal-conservatives in the Republican Party thought they could nominate a candidate without having to worry too much about those issues most important to social-conservatives. So they went with name recognition, and the elusive perception of "electability." Thus Rudy Giuliani got the funding and media exposure, pushing him to the top of the GOP contenders. Mit Romney was thrown out as a bone to social-conservatives in spite of his weak record on pro-life issues. This was to keep them quiet, with the possibility of him being picked for vice president, should Giuliani win the nomination. Fiscal-conservatives thought the social-conservative would do what they usually do, and follow along like good little puppy dogs, for fear of Hillary Clinton. But something happened six-months ago that nobody expected. The social-conservatives revolted! They gagged on what the GOP offered, and held a "Values Voters" summit, in which they selected their own contender to take the place of Rudy Giuliani. They selected Mike Huckabee.



So Mike Huckabee rose to the top because he became the favorite son of conservative Evangelical voters. He is the living embodiment of a "protest vote" from social-conservatives in the Republican base. Believe me when I say the GOP leadership doesn't want him. They already selected their favorites over six-months ago (Giuliani and Romney). Huckabee is a wrench in their works. His surge in the polls represents a power play by the social-conservative coalition. In effect, what's happening is the social-conservatives are telling the fiscal-conservatives in the GOP something like this...
We're not going to follow your lead anymore. We've followed you for over 40 years, and where has it gotten us? Roe v. Wade is still the law of the land, Gay-Marriage is becoming the law of the land, and now they're telling us we can't even say "Merry Christmas" anymore. Then, after all that you give us Rudy Giuliani (a pro-abortion social-liberal) and Mit Romney (a flip-flopper on abortion)!?! Well no more! We reject your candidates! Now you will follow our lead for a change!
Thus emerges Mike Huckabee. Huckabee is a very unique candidate, unlike any we've seen in our lifetime, because the "Values Voters" summit has effectively charged him with the task of uniting America's diverse (and polarized) religious groups into an independent social-conservative coalition that no longer needs the traditional fiscal-conservative leadership. He's got to pull it off all by himself. A formidable task, especially with the hostilities that exist between various religious groups in the United States. Some Evangelicals are militantly anti-Catholic, while some Catholics are naturally distrusting of Evangelicals. Mormons tend to be alienated by both groups, and in turn, they have their own favorite candidate for the time being -- Mit Romney. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Hostilities exist between various conservative religious groups based on their views of world events and how that should relate to foreign policy. Then there are the antiwar views of Catholics, verses many Evangelicals who largely supported the war in Iraq. Capital punishment is also a big issue. Though Evangelicals, Catholics and Mormons can all agree on the general pro-life premise that abortion is murder, both Evangelicals and Mormons tend to favor capital punishment, while Catholics generally do not. The list goes on and on.

One of the reasons why the social-conservatives haven't lead the Republican Party since the 1860s is because of their inability to get along and form a cohesive alliance that can sustain itself. So the last time social-conservatives ran the Republican Party, they united behind the abolition of slavery, giving black Americans full citizenship and representation in Congress. Once that agenda was accomplished, the social-conservative coalition fell apart, briefly resurfacing only to rally behind prohibition in the 1920s. Since that miserable failure, and colossal example of poor judgment, the social-conservative coalition gladly sat down quietly, to allow the fiscal-conservatives to drive the GOP train for the rest of the 20th century.

The problem with this is that as fiscal-conservatives ran the GOP, social-conservative issues took a back seat to economic issues, trade agreements and foreign policy. Republican candidates fell into the habit of giving lip-service to social-conservatives, but not fully carrying through on their promises. In effect, the issues most important to social-conservatives, became a political 'footballs' which GOP candidates gladly tossed as a means of getting votes, but had no intention of actually fixing the problems, because they didn't really want the issues to go away. They wanted to keep them around to use as political 'footballs' again in the next election cycle. This election marks the year the social-conservatives cried "NO MORE!" Whatever flaws Mike Huckabee once had, the social-conservatives were willing to overlook because of his strong and uncompromising pro-life and pro-family political record.

Mike Huckabee's surge is not just a reflection on his ability to communicate with the people on important issues like border security and tax reform, but it is also a sign of a power play going on in the Republican Party. The social-conservatives are attempting to unseat the fiscal-conservatives for leadership of the GOP. It's as if the social-conservatives are telling the fiscal-conservatives to "sit back and ride," while they drive the train for a while.

If the fiscal-conservatives think they can wrestle control of the GOP back easily, they are sorely mistaken. Prior to the "Values Voters" summit, there was serious talk among prominent Evangelical leaders of leaving the GOP and creating a third political party, or perhaps joining an existing one. The 'Values Voters" summit was in effect a last ditch effort to save the Republican Party from a mass exodus by replacing the assumed presidential nominee (Rudy Giuliani) with their own selection (Mike Huckabee). As it appears right now, it looks like it worked. The only thing that remains is to see how well it worked. 

Fiscal-conservatives seem oblivious to how much trouble the Republican Party is really in. Social-conservatives make up about half of the Republican base. If they leave the GOP, the party is finished! The effects will reach far beyond the 2008 election. Not only will Hillary Clinton win the presidency, but with conservatism fractured between two parties, the Democrats will be able to easily win elections and control both the federal and state governments for more than a decade. For the sake of America, the GOP must be preserved, and the ONLY way to do that is to make sure social-conservatives have their way for a while.

As for Mike Huckabee, he finds himself in a very interesting position with the media, and part of it is unavoidable. As a former baptist minister, he becomes an automatic magnet to the religious issues in this country. Naturally, the mainstream media (not liking social-conservatives to begin with) will use the inherent polarization among religious groups as an opportunity to try to drive a wedge between them, thereby trying to break up the social-conservative coalition (Evangelicals, Mormons and Practicing Catholics), so as to help the Democratic opposition (Hillary Clinton) in the general election. What the mainstream media may (or may not) realize is that their actions might not only help the Democrats win in 2008, but they may also be instrumental in the demise of the Republican Party. This could happen if the wedge between social-conservative groups is driven deep enough to fracture the fragile coalition, thus allowing fiscal-conservatives to regain control of the primary election process. Should that happen, and a candidate like Rudy Giuliani get the Republican nomination, most social-conservatives will feel the party has left them behind. All it will take will be for one prominent Evangelical leader to announce his exodus from the GOP. Millions of Evangelicals will follow, and that will be the end of the Republican Party as we know it.

On that note, we now enter the 2008 primary season....

Friday, December 28, 2007

Mit Romney Responds to 'Catholic Online'

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Former Governor Mit Romney is the second candidate to grant an interview with Catholic Online, demonstrating that he takes the Catholic vote seriously. The first candidate to grant an interview with Catholic Online was former Governor Mike Huckabee. Since then Catholic Online issued a challenge to all presidential candidates to do the same. To date, only Huckabee and Romney have responded.  'The Catholic Knight' applauds these two candidates for doing this...
(Catholic Online) - As the Iowa Caucus draws close, we are happy to present the responses to our questions sent to us by Governor Mitt Romney, a Republican candidate for President. Former Governor Romney was the 70th Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and has an extensive background in executive leadership positions...

read the full interview here

Thursday, December 27, 2007

How To Reform John Hagee and Cornerstone Church


ATTENTION: John Hagee has now apologized to Catholics, and the Catholic Church, for making these anti-Catholic accusations, and has recanted them entirely...
read more here

A reader of 'The Catholic Knight' wrote the following...
"I truly believe that Huckabee isn't a bigot, but he needs to take the same stance that Bush did and apply pressure to Hagee to drop his views or forever renounce Hagee...

see original thread
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Actually, that's our job. George W. Bush didn't get Bob Jones University to reform its racist student dating policy. That was the result of national media attention, and outrage from most Americans who believe such policies have no place anywhere. The administrative staff at Bob Jones University found themselves under the media microscope, and that combined with public outcry is what caused them to change their ways. It wasn't because G.W. Bush applied pressure. It was quite the opposite. It was because people just like you and I, millions of them, applied pressure.

The same can happen with John Hagee and Cornerstone Church, but it's not Mike Huckabee's place to do it. It's our job. As I said above, Evangelicals and Catholics concerned about this can work together to pressure John Hagee and Cornerstone Church. If what you need is a leader on religious issues, than don't look to a political candidate. Look to someone else. Better yet, I'll step up to the plate. I can't be your leader, but I can at least give you some direction. You want to put the screws to John Hagee? I'll show you how. You're going to have to put your money where your mouth is though and follow these steps...
  1. John Hagee's biggest crime against Catholics is telling people that Pope Pius XII cooperated with Hitler to exterminate the Jews. This is a bold-faced lie based entirely on 1960's communist propaganda. The first thing to do is go to Amazon.com and buy a copy of Rabbi David Dalin's book "The Myth of Hilter's Pope."
  2. Have that copy shipped directly to Cornerstone Church, care of Pastor John Hagee. Here's the address: 18755 Stone Oak Pkwy, San Antonio, TX 78258
  3. Send him a nice and respectful letter, explaining your reason for sending the book, and your disgust with his poor grasp of history. Remember, Christian charity is the key here. Jesus said they will know we're his disciples by the love we show. You can be firm, but you MUST show charity.
  4. Send a copy of your letter to CNN (here), FoxNews (here), and Drudge Report (here).
  5. Order a copy of the book for yourself and read it -- in case somebody asks you some questions.
  6. Leave a comment for us below, to let us know you did it, and to encourage others to do the same.
That's it folks! That's all you have to do. I guarantee if enough people do this, it WILL make a difference. (Just to let you know, 'The Catholic Knight' makes no financial gain from book sales on this action alert.) The time has come to stop complaining, and start doing something. 'The Catholic Knight' eagerly awaits your comments....

The NEW Novus Ordo - A Sign of Things to Come


THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: In addition to the traditional seven-candlestick alter, along with traditional vestments, we now have this...
(National Review) - In a recent address to the bishops and priests of St. Peter’s, Pope Benedict called for a greater “continuity with tradition” in the music of the Church, and spoke of the value of the Church’s older musical traditions, among them the baroque sacred music of the 17th and 18th centuries and Gregorian Chant. The address followed the pope’s issuance, in July, of an Apostolic Letter (accompanying letter in English here) in which he permitted broader use of the Latin Mass, the “Tridentine” rite authorized by the Council of Trent in the sixteenth century and promulgated most recently by John XXIII in 1962.

The pope’s pronouncements were received with skepticism by those who regard his views on sacred music, like his sympathy for the Latin Mass, as so much reactionary old-fogeyism. But neither the pope’s critics nor even many of his supporters appear to have grasped what His Holiness is up to.

The pope adheres to old Greek belief that words and sounds — and the rhythmic patterns in which they are bound together in music and poetry — have a unique power to awaken the mind. He has spoken frequently of the power of rhythm to prepare the soul to receive truths that would otherwise remain unintelligible. In 2002 he described the experience of listening to music as an “encounter with the beautiful,” one that becomes “the wound of the arrow that strikes the heart and in this way opens our eyes.” He went on to say,
For me, an unforgettable experience was the Bach concert that Leonard Bernstein conducted in Munich after the sudden death [in 1981] of Karl Richter. I was sitting next to the Lutheran Bishop Hanselmann. When the last note of one of the great Thomas-Kantor-Cantatas faded away, we looked at each spontaneously and right then we said, ‘Anyone who has heard this, knows that the faith is true.’ The music had such an extraordinary force of reality that we realized, no longer by deduction, but by the impact on our hearts, that it could not have originated from nothingness, but could only have come to be through the power of the Truth that became real in the composer’s inspiration.

For Benedict, the music and poetry of the liturgy are not merely ornamental; they are essential to the education to the soul. “How often,” the pope exclaimed, in October, to members of the Pontifical Institute for Sacred Music, “does the rich biblical and patristic tradition stress the effectiveness of song and sacred music in moving and uplifting hearts to penetrate, so to speak, the intimate depths of God’s life itself!”

It is this conception of the educational power of rhythm that underlies the pope’s defense of the Latin Mass and of the baroque and Gregorian traditions. It is a fair assumption that, in liberating these forms from liturgical purgatory, His Holiness hopes that their rhythmic virtues will serve as a bulwark against the bad rhythm (kakometros) that today permeates the West....

read full story here

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Pope's Three-Point Agenda for Voting Catholics

Reposted From November of 2006...

It's simple, and it's easy to remember! Pope Benedict XVI outlined the three-point agenda for Catholics in politics and elections.

The three-point agenda is...
  1. "Pro-Life"
  2. "Pro-Family"
  3. "School-Choice"
The pope's three-point agenda of Catholic Social Justice comes in a timely manner, as Catholics in the USA prepare for the 2006 Congressional election and the 2008 Presidential election. The pope clarified...

Benedict XVI said that the focus of public interventions by the Catholic Church "is the protection and promotion of the dignity of the person and she is thereby consciously drawing particular attention to principles which are not negotiable."

The Pope spelled out these principles thus:

-- "protection of life in all its stages, from the first moment of conception to natural death";

-- "recognition and promotion of the natural structure of the family -- as a union between a man and a woman based on marriage -- and its defense from attempts to make it juridically equivalent to radically different forms of union which in reality harm it and contribute to its de-stabilization, obscuring its particular character and its irreplaceable social role";

-- and "the protection of the right of parents to educate their children."

Common to all

Benedict XVI clarified: "These principles are not truths of faith, even though they receive further light and confirmation from faith; they are inscribed in human nature itself and therefore they are common to all humanity."

"The Church's action in promoting them is therefore not confessional in character, but is addressed to all people, prescinding from any religious affiliation they may have," he said....

read full story here

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: As Roman Catholics we need to spread the word. Please tell as many of your Catholic friends and neighbors about the pope's three-point agenda for the upcoming elections. Feel free to direct them to this story on this web page. Here is the URL to cut and paste if you need it: http://catholicknight.blogspot.com/2006/04/popes-three-point-agenda-for-voting.html

Then the next thing we need to do is start searching for candidates that best fit the three-point agenda. My understanding is that the three-points are already arranged in their level of importance. The first point (sanctity of human life) is the most important, with the traditional family structure being the second most important, and choice in education being the third most important. Let's really hold our politicians' feet to the fire on these issues. If they want the Catholic vote, let's make them earn it!

I encourage you to pass this message on to as many Catholics as possible. Once again; here is the URL to this web page if your need it: http://catholicknight.blogspot.com/2006/04/popes-three-point-agenda-for-voting.html

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas! England Now Catholic Again!

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Merry Christmas everyone! And with that joyous greeting comes some good news. The most practiced Christian religion in England is Catholicism again! This is something the British Isle has not seen in nearly 500 years, and for the first time in modern history, a Protestant nation has become Catholic again. Well, maybe not officially on paper, but who needs paper.

With the conversion on former Prime Minister Blair to Catholicism comes the news that Catholics now make up the majority of England's practicing Christians. Though all Christian religions (including Catholicism) have been on the decline in England for the last three decades, there appears to be a slowing trend in the English Catholic Church, with the possibility of a turn around in the near future, especially with the potential reemergence of the Anglican Rite should it be approved by the Vatican.
(CWN) - Blair's entry into the Catholic Church came just as the London Daily Telegraph confirmed that Catholics now outnumber Anglicans among England's regular worshippers. The Telegraph cited a survey that showed 861,000 Catholics attending Sunday Mass in England, and only 852,000 attending Anglican services....

read full story here

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Mike Huckabee Renounces John Hagee's Anti-Catholic Rhetoric

Related Stories:
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: This just in from MSNBC. Huckabee renounces John Hagee's anti-Catholic rhetoric...
(MSNBC) - Huckabee will deliver the sermon at Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, TX this morning where Pastor John Hagee has gotten some heat for being critical of the Catholic Church and its failure to condemn the actions of Adolf Hitler during WWII. On Friday Huckabee distanced himself from Hagey's comments but said it would not affect his visit on Sunday.

"I'm going to let Pastor Hagee speak to that because, you know, I can't speak for him anymore than he could speak for me. I'm sure that there're things I'll say that he disagrees with," Huckabee told reporters on his press bus.

"I would certainly never characterize the Catholic Church as being pro-Nazi, never. I don't know when he said those things or when he wrote them I have no idea…there's things I said 20 years ago I wouldn't say today. If that's still his position, I wouldn't agree."

read full story here

Related Story...

Saturday, December 22, 2007

The Mike Huckabee Anti-Catholic Challenge

Related Stories:

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: In the wake of Mike Huckabee's address to John Hagee's Cornerstone Church in San Antonio Texas, the media has gone into overdrive in an attempt to drive a wedge between Catholic and Evangelical Christians. Unfortunately, many in the Catholic media have already taken the bait, and now the insinuations of anti-catholicism are starting to fly. That being the case, 'The Catholic Knight' offers the following challenge. If anyone can show me that Mike Huckabee did not reach out to Catholics, did not include them in government, or showed any signs of anti-Catholicism during his tenure as Lt. Governor and two terms as Governor of the State of Arkansas, I will withdraw my support of him immediately!!!! Since I'm 100% sure nobody will be able to do this, I feel pretty confident that I'll be supporting him on into the GOP convention.

Check the comments section below for supposed "evidence." As I said, I suspect no one will be able to do this, but go ahead and try. I'm listening....

The Chapel Veil - Veiling or Head Covering - Fully Explained

Chaldean Catholic Women Attend Sunday Mass

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Unfortunately, something as simple as a chapel veil has become somewhat of a controversy in the modern Catholic Church. To be more accurate, it's not so much a controversy in the "modern" Catholic Church as it is in the "western" Catholic Church, particularly in English-speaking nations. One would not find so much of a controversy if one were to visit a Catholic Church in the third world. There one would find the chapel veil used by many Catholic women almost universally. Eastern Orthodox women also veil in these regions. While here in the western industrialized world, eastern Orthodox women (along with eastern Catholic women in the Byzantine Rite) have kept the custom a bit more faithfully than western Catholic women in the general Roman Rite. Yes, veiling in some form was even common in most Protestant communities for many centuries prior to the 1960s. In some Protestant groups the custom evolved into large elaborate hats, which one can still see practiced in the Methodist Episcopal denomination. The custom is also still practiced in the form of lace mantillas and/or bonnets among the Amish, Mennonites, the Apostolic Christian Church, some Pentecostal groups, which includes the 'Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith,' and the stricter Dutch Reformed churches. Though most Protestant denominations have no official expectation that women veil, some individual ladies choose to practice the custom according to their understanding of 1st Corinthians 11.

The chapel veil was the custom of all Catholic churches (eastern and western), everywhere in the world (including English-speaking nations) for nearly 2,000 years. The custom only fell out of use among western Catholic women, particularly in English-speaking nations, in just the last 30-40 years. Why is that?

A movement was introduced to western culture at around the same time that explains a lot of it. The movement was called feminism. Like most social movements born in the 1960s, some good did come out of it. But at the same time, some not-so-good things came out of it. On the positive side, feminism pushed for equality for women in the workplace and in government. On the negative side, feminism saddled women with burdens they never bargained for, and in some ways made their struggle worse than it was before. The long term effects of feminism (positive and negative) will be debated for decades to come, and that is not the purpose of this article. So for now, we'll leave the sociology to the sociologists.

What concerns us is feminism's effect on Catholic women in western cultures, particularly those in English-speaking nations. The most noticeable effect in such nations was the rapid disappearance of the chapel veil from mass. Almost overnight the veil was gone. This was accompanied by the release of the new Code of Canon Law in 1983, which no longer mentioned chapel veils. Since the new Code of Canon Law abrogated the older code, it was assumed by many that the custom of veiling was also abrogated, simply because it was no longer mentioned. That combined with feminist influences on Catholic women in western nations led to the popular misconception that veiling is now optional, and women are no longer required to do it. As a result, it came to be the norm for older traditional women to keep wearing the veil, while younger Catholic women discarded it completely.

The feminist transformation of western Catholic women was accomplished mainly though propaganda. It was propaganda that fit the feminist mindset very well, but actually mischaracterized and falsely represented the Catholic mindset. Women were told that the veil represented male oppression, and that a male controlled Catholic Church sought to dominate women by forcing their subjection through the symbolic act of veiling while in Church. (Now none of this is true, and if it were, yours truly would be against the chapel veil as well.) The tide of feminism was overwhelming in western culture, particularly in English-speaking nations, and as a result most Catholic women simply accepted this propaganda as truth without ever questioning it. Thirty years have gone by, and one can easily find Catholic women who still accept the propaganda without question, having never even heard a rebuttal.

It would appear the Vatican listened to the feminist movement, and did find a potential problem in the Code of Canon Law that could be made as a case to bolster the erroneous feminist argument. It was possibly for this reason the Vatican dropped the chapel veil requirement from the Code of Canon Law. Under the old Code of Canon Law, women could theoretically be forced under penalty to wear a chapel veil against their will. The problem with this was twofold. First, this canon could be used as a case to bolster the erroneous feminist argument against the chapel veil. Second, this canon actually defeated the authentic Catholic reason for veiling in the first place.

The authentic Catholic reason for wearing the chapel veil is the Biblical reason. It's just something that all Christian women (regardless of denomination) are supposed to do, not because they have to, but because they're supposed to want to. The Catholic Church has decided to no longer enforce this Biblical custom through Canon Law, and in doing so, the Church is saying it does not want to be our nanny. The chapel veil is a custom for women to do voluntarily, because they want to, not because they are being forced to. The idea is that women are to read what the Scriptures have to say, and be convicted according to what is contained therein. In order for a chapel veil to be an authentic sign of humility and holiness, it must be voluntary. Indeed, Christian women are supposed to wear one, but it is never to be forced.

The Scriptural case for the chapel veil...
1st Corinthians 11:2-16
I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I have delivered them to you...
The tradition of the chapel veil comes from Christ, by way of the Holy Spirit, through St. Paul, for Paul mentions later in this same epistle: "What I am writing to you is a command of the Lord. If any one does not recognize this, he is not recognized." - 1st Corinthians 14:37-38 St. Paul commends the Corinthians for keeping the chapel veil tradition, among other traditions, and then he continues in chapter 11...
....But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a woman is her husband, and the head of Christ is God...
Here we have the central point of misunderstanding. This verse has been misused time and time again as a means of male superiority. Not only is this a misreading of the text, but it completely misses an important theological point Paul is trying to make. This chapter of Corinthians is entirely Eucharistic, in the sense that it centers around the Eucharistic celebration (or the mass). The following verses (17-34) deal entirely with the celebration of Holy Communion. When Paul says the head of every man is Christ, what he's saying is that Christ came in the form of a man. He's making a statement about the incarnation. He's saying that Christ came in human form, and because of this, the man becomes a physical representation of Christ -- particularly if he is a husband. When he says the head of every woman is her husband, he is not saying that women are inferior to men in any way. What he's saying is that if a husband becomes the physical representation of Christ's incarnation, than his wife becomes the physical representation of Christ's spouse -- or the Church. When Paul says "husband" here, he is referring both to earthly husbands, and to Christ himself. That being the case, wives take on the symbolic role of the Church. Paul continues in chapter 11...
...Any man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head, but any woman who prays or prophesies with her head unveiled dishonors her head...
Again, this goes straight back to the incarnation. All of this is a symbol of what we Catholic Christians believe about Christ, his incarnation, and the Eucharist. Paul tells us that if a man covers his head during mass, he dishonors his spiritual "head" which is Christ. In other words, a man who covers his head during mass dishonors Christ, because his action of veiling himself sends the physical statement that Christ was not incarnate as a man. The woman, on the other hand, representing the Church, ought to cover her head because if she believes that Christ is truly incarnate, she should veil herself as a sign that the Church has been made holy by Christ as his spouse. In doing so she honors Christ as a symbol of his sanctification on the Church. She also honors her husband with a physical sign that he represents Christ, because Christ came in the form of a man. The chapel veil is a sign of holiness because Christ has made his Church holy, and women represent the Church as the "bride" of Christ. It is a sign that the Church is covered and under Christ's protection. This is the symbolism of the Church's relationship to Christ. It is not so much a statement of a particular woman's holiness, but rather the Church's holiness. Paul continues...
-- it is the same as if her head were shaven. For if a woman will not veil herself, then she should cut off her hair; but if it is disgraceful for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her wear a veil...
Here Paul is really laying it on think, and he has good reason. He's trying to convey a big theological point. Customs in the church are not the result of random happenstance. These things exist for a reason. Under the Old Covenant, both Jewish men and women covered their heads during worship, but the early Jewish Christians changed that custom for a reason. They wanted to make this practice of veiling a symbol of Christ's incarnation, like they did with so many other Jewish traditions, and as Paul mentions in chapter 14 (cited above) these things are not trivial man-made customs, they came from the Holy Spirit Himself. Here Paul is telling us that it is shameful for a Christian woman not to cover her head during mass, and he is using an illustration from antiquity that has to do with punishment. In ancient times, women would have their heads shaved publicly as punishment for lack of modesty. It was a form of public humiliation. Here Paul is not advocating the shaving of a woman's head for refusing to wear the chapel veil, but rather, he is trying to convey the seriousness of the imagery. When a Christian woman refuses to do this, she is in effect saying (though perhaps not intentionally) that Christ was not incarnate in the form of a man. Granted, in modern times this is almost certainly not the intention of any woman who refuses to veil during mass, but what Paul is telling us here is that every custom in the Church has meaning, and because of that, failure to keep those customs also has meaning, whether one intends to convey that meaning or not. It's sort of like bowing, kneeling or genuflecting before the Eucharist for example. Catholics do these things in mass for a reason, and that reason is to stress the real presence of Christ in the blessed sacrament. In practice, we are bowing, kneeling and genuflecting before our God and King, whom we profess to be really and truly present in the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist. That being the case, if one fails to bow, kneel and genuflect, what kind of signal does that send to those around him/her? One may not intend to send any signals of disrespect, but invariably one can, whether one intends to or not. The custom of the chapel veil has similar significance. Paul continues....
...For a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. (For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.) That is why a woman ought to have a veil on her head, because of the angels....
Here we have another commonly abused passage. Again, Paul is not trying to bolster male dominance here. Remember, we have to keep the context of this chapter in mind, and the context of 1st Corinthians 11 is the Eucharistic celebration. Paul calls man the "image and glory of God" for one reason and one reason only -- because Jesus Christ (who is God) was made incarnate as a man. Then he expounds on this by pointing out that the woman is the "glory of man" (or mankind). This is meant to be a complement. Of the two human genders, women are far more "glorious" then men in their appearance, beauty, voice, fashion and general gracefulness. The hair was considered a woman's crowing glory in Biblical times (Song of Songs 6:5). Beyond that, women bear the special gift of motherhood. In that, God touches them in a way no man has ever experienced. The Scriptures tell us that God Himself fashions the unborn child in the womb, and plants a living human soul inside the body of a women when she becomes pregnant (Psalm 139:13-16). In this way, God touches the body of a woman in a way he never touches a man's body. This makes the woman's body a sacred vessel of God's creative powers. It is something that is particularly holy, and must be respected as such. It is no wonder why women are called the "fairer sex." Paul is agreeing with that here. However, Paul is also reminding women not to get too prideful. He reminds them of the Biblical story of Adam and Eve, where the woman is made to complement the man, and not vice versa. Now we learn that the chapel veil is also a sign of personal humility in addition to the Church's holiness. The woman not only covers her head as a sign of her belief in a incarnation, not only to show how Christ has made his Church holy, but also to cover her "glory," as a sign of humility to show that she is not vain or overly proud of her womanhood and beauty. The veil or headcovering is a symbol of the woman's acceptance of her role in society, the family, and the Church, in accordance with God's will. It is an imitation of the Virgin Mary, who wore such a headcovering.

Then St. Paul says something very curious. He says the woman ought to veil her head during mass "because of the angels." Paul tells us that the angels participate with us during mass, and this is reinforced by the writings of St. John: "And another angel came and stood before the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given to him much incense that he might offer it with the prayers of all the saints upon the golden altar which is before the throne." (Revelation 8:3, see also Matt. 18:10). The angels watch everything that is going on during mass, as they participate in the same liturgy we do. They are also well aware of the customs of the Church and what they mean -- even the custom of veiling. Angels are offended when we ignore or refuse to follow any liturgical custom, whether it be failing to kneel or veil in the presence of our Eucharistic Lord.
...(Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man nor man of woman; for as woman was made from man, so man is now born of woman. And all things are from God.)...
If ever there was a verse to counter the abuse of male dominance, this is it. If ever there was a verse to prove that St. Paul was not a male chauvinist, this is it. Paul follows his previous verse, reminding women to be humble, with this verse, reminding men to be humble too. He doesn't want the men to use what he just wrote as a means of beating down the women in a form of male superiority. He is reminding the men that they are not superior to the women, but rather fully dependent on them, and that both genders come from God. One cannot be "better" than the other. Then he continues with some rhetorical questions to back his point...
...Judge for yourselves; is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered? Does not nature itself teach you that for a man to wear long hair is degrading to him, but if a woman has long hair, it is her pride? For her hair is given to her for a covering....
Paul is not prohibiting hair styles here. To focus on hair styles is to miss the point. Paul is simply asking a few rhetorical questions based on popular culture. In most cultures women have longer hair then men, and when they do, it usually looks better. He's saying that when a woman has long hair it usually looks beautiful, and when a man has long hair, it usually looks a little odd. In some cultures, long hair is considered a sign of femininity. So if a man has long hair, it looks feminine in those cultures, and that is "degrading" to him. What Paul is doing here is he's appealing to nature. He's saying; "Look, even mother nature teaches us the same lesson. She gives women long hair as a covering and it looks good and proper on them." Then he concludes with this interesting verse...
...If any one is disposed to be contentious, we recognize no other practice, nor do the churches of God.
Some Bible versions have mistranslated this verse to say "we recognize no such practice, nor do the churches of God." This mistranslation is often used to negate the previous first half of the chapter. In other words, those who abuse such mistranslations say that Paul spent half a chapter, explaining a deep theological principle pertaining to a custom he applauds the Corinthians for keeping, only to say in this last verse that they really don't need to keep it. Such interpretations are silliness. The proper translation is rendered here as "we recognize no other practice." Here Paul is telling the Corinthians not to get too contentious over the chapel veil custom, because he's not going to burden them with anything else beyond that. He's not going to tell men and women how to dress. He's not going to tell them what kind of a veil they should wear, or how they should wear it. He's simply saying that this is the custom as it is practiced in the "churches of God" and they recognize no other practice beyond this.

So the chapel veil has nothing to do with male dominance. It has nothing to do with subjecting women under male authority. It has everything to do with Christ's incarnation, and the real presence of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.

The Bible is very clear about this. Women are supposed to veil in the presence of the Eucharist and in prayer, but at the same time, they are to take it upon themselves to do it. They are not to be forced into it by men, nor coerced into it by the Canon Law of the Church. Coercion actually defeats the whole purpose of veiling. (Which may be one reason why the custom of the veil has no place in canon law.) It has to be voluntary, if it is truly to be a sign of holiness and humility. This is why the Church removed it from Canon Law. It was not to send a signal to women that they need not do it anymore. Rather, it was to tell women that when they veil themselves, it is not because men told them to. It is a sign and symbol coming from them, voluntarily, not as a grudging requirement against their will.

Furthermore, the chapel veil is a sign of the incarnation, illustrated in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. Women are supposed to veil in the presence of the Sacrament and in prayer before God. They are not veiling in the presence of men, nor has the tradition of the Church ever required this. The feminist propaganda was wrong. If the chapel veil were a sign of male dominance, than it would have been required in the presence of men, but it is not. Nowhere in Church history, Canon Law, or the Bible, are women required to veil in the presence of men. They are only expected to veil in the presence of our Lord.

Though the custom has generally lapsed in western cultures, particularly English-speaking nations, it is not erased entirely from the conscience of western Christians. For example; what's the first thing a Catholic mom does when her daughter is preparing for first communion and confirmation? She goes out and buys a veil. Likewise, what's one of the most important accessories to a bridal gown? Why it's the veil of course! Finally, when a baseball game or community event is opened in prayer, regardless of the religious denominations of those in attendance, what's the first thing everybody does? The men all remove their hats, and the women do not. Funny how that works, isn't it. This doesn't just happen by accident. It all goes back to the ancient Christian custom of veiling.

Yes, Christian women are supposed to veil during worship, and this is especially true for Catholic women who understand the incarnation of Christ and His real presence in the Blessed Sacrament. According to the Bible, this is not optional. All Christian women are expected to do it, but it is to be done voluntarily, without force or coercion. The custom was removed from the Canon Law of the Catholic Church, but it was never abrogated as a Biblical custom of the Faith. To veil properly, women must do so voluntarily, and they must do so with proper understanding of the custom and what it means. Hopefully this article has been helpful in this.

Related Stories...

Friday, December 21, 2007

Huckabee's Speech At Hagee's Cornerstone Church Is No Big Deal

Related Stories:
(St. Petersburg Times, published March 1, 2000) - Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on Tuesday defended his older brother's controversial visit to Bob Jones University and said he also would be willing to speak at the South Carolina school, which bans interracial dating and whose founder once labeled the Catholic Church a "satanic cult."...

read full story here
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Yes, it's true. Back in 2000, then Governor George W. Bush spoke at the infamously anti-Catholic and racist Fundamentalist college -- Bob Jones University -- as part of his campaign trail for President of the United States. Most of us may not remember then, but some of us do, and I am one of the few. I was a new Catholic, recently converted from Evangelicalism, when I received an automated phone call from the John McCain campaign. The phone call notified me of G.W. Bush's speech at Bob Jones University, that it was an anti-Catholic college, and seemed to insinuate that his presence there implied an anti-Catholic sentiment in G.W. Bush. I was infuriated, not at G.W. Bush, but at John McCain for trying to pit Catholics against Evangelicals in a political campaign. It was then I vowed to never, ever vote for John McCain as long as I lived. It's a vow I take seriously to this day.

In the wake of Mike Huckabee's upcoming speech at John Hagee's anti-Catholic Cornerstone Church, we're likely to hear volumes of rhetoric coming out of rival political campaigns, and possibly even the mainstream media, as once again political hacks try to pit Evangelicals against Catholics and vice versa.
(CNA, Dec 20, 2007) - The Republican presidential candidate, Mike Huckabee, has been garnering attention in the media with his surge in political polls. However, a campaign stop this Sunday by Huckabee at a mega-church whose pastor sees Hitler as linked to the Catholic Church, could soon steal the spotlight...

read full story here
We need to put this in historical context. Mike Huckabee is not the first Republican candidate to speak at an anti-Catholic organization, and he certainly won't be the last. Likewise, such appearances do not automatically imply an endorsement of the organization's anti-Catholic message. One could fault President G.W. Bush on many things, but anti-Catholicism is certainly not one of them. Since his 2000 campaign appearance at the infamous Bob Jones University, President Bush has visited the Vatican twice, spoken at countless Catholic events, and appointed two practicing Catholics to the United States Supreme Court. One of them he made Chief Justice. These are hardly the acts of an "anti-Catholic presidential candidate." It would appear that Bob Jones University made little to no impact on President Bush. I think it's reasonable to expect the same with Cornerstone Church and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.

Social Conservatives (Evangelicals and Practicing Catholics) must resist the temptation of the media and political hacks to pit us against one another. The Secular Left understands all too well that a strong Social Conservative alliance between Evangelicals and Practicing Catholics would be unstoppable in a presidential election, which is why there has been a concerted effort to drive a wedge between Catholics and Evangelicals, both in elections past, and in the current election today. This episode with Huckabee's speech at John Hagee's Cornerstone Church is just the latest attempt. Republican candidates have always courted large Evangelical Protestant organizations for votes. There is nothing unusual about this. We saw it with G.W. Bush in 2000 at Bob Jones University, and we're seeing it again with Mike Huckabee now at Cornerstone Church. For those who would speculate that this appearance hints toward an anti-Catholic agenda in Mike Huckabee, we need only be reminded of G.W. Bush's pro-Catholic record since his speech at Bob Jones University. These things simply must be put into historical context.

Catholic voters can rest at ease knowing that Mike Huckabee takes them seriously. To date, he is the only presidential candidate willing to take time out of his busy campaign schedule to grant an interview to 'Catholic Online.' The contents of that very revealing interview can be read here.

If Catholics and Evangelicals want to put a positive spin on this whole event, the focus should not be on Mike Huckabee, but rather on John Hagee. Pastor Hagee's anti-Catholic views represent a throwback in Evangelical thinking. They are neither historically accurate, nor do they represent the views of most Evangelicals today. In the wake of the national media attention Bob Jones University received after G.W. Bush's visit in 2000, the college was later forced to abandon it's racist policy on interracial dating. Granted, that doesn't fix all of the problems with Bob Jones University, but it is surely a step in the right direction. Perhaps something similar can happen with John Hagee and Cornerstone Church. Perhaps focused media attention might cause the pastor, and his organization, to back off of some of his most inflammatory anti-Catholic rhetoric. That would certainly be a positive spin on this event, and something worthy of all concerned Catholics and Evangelicals to work toward.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Saving those Damned Catholics



GET THE BOOK HERE


THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Yes, this is the real deal. No, it's not a parody. The nation's leading Pro-Life crusader is fed up with the weak and cowardly bishops of the U.S. Catholic Church and other so-called "Catholic leaders." Honestly, I can't blame her. You're thoughts?

Huckabee & The New World Order



THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: WorldNetDaily.com reports the following presidential candidates have ties to globalist organizations (Bilderberg Group and CFR) instrumental in expanding NAFTA to create the 'North American Union' (NAU)...

DEMOCRATS
  • Hillary Rodham Clinton
  • Barack Hussein Obama
  • John Edwards
REPUBLICANS
  • Rudy Giuliani
  • Mitt Romney
  • Fred Thompson
  • John McCain
Mike Huckabee is not a member of these groups, which may help to explain why he's being so relentlessly attacked by mainstream Republicans. 'The Catholic Knight' has always asserted that Democrats are socialists and Republicans are globalists. Neither of them have our best interest in mind. Democrats seek to consolidate power in Washington DC, while Republicans seek to consolidate power on Wall Street. Both of them are after big government, they just define big government differently.

In the days ahead, it will be interesting to watch the globalist machine in the Republican Party unload on Mike Huckabee for not being one of the Good ol' Boys. Naturally, their attacks will not center around globalist issues, but make no mistake about it. The preservation of NAFTA, and the creation of the 'North American Union,' is their primary motivation for nit-picking Huckabee on various side issues, while giving other Republican candidates a pass on the exact same things.

'Catholic Online' Launches New 'Politics' Section for Catholic Voters

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: This is a much needed service from a well established Catholic media outlet. 'Catholic Online' has taken the time to review each and every candidate running for president, as well as highlight specific political issues in regional areas, and how they all pertain to the Roman Catholic Faith. 'The Catholic Knight' highly recommends this resource to all of my readers...  

link: Catholic Online Politics

So far, Governor Mike Huckabee is the ONLY presidential candidate that has responded to Catholic Online's political questions. Catholic Online has extended the challenge to ALL presidential candidates running.

For those Catholics who have expressed concern to 'The Catholic Knight' over Mike Huckabee's Baptist background, and his potential view of Catholics, his response to Catholic Online is very revealing. Of all the candidates running for president, it would appear that Mike Huckabee is the only one who takes the Catholic vote seriously enough to respond to the questions of a major Catholic media outlet.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Huckabee Christmas Ad


(AP) - Catholic League president Bill Donahue said Huckabee went beyond wishing people a joyous holiday. Donahue said he was especially disturbed by the cross-like image created by a white bookcase in the background of the ad, saying he believed it was a subliminal message... read full story here

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Put a sock in it Bill! I've supported you on many other crusades, but this time you're barking up the wrong tree. It was a bookshelf for heaven's sake. Besides, even if the cross was intentional (which it wasn't), what difference does it make? He also said "Merry CHRISTmas" in the ad as well. Is that crossing the line too? By the way, a "subliminal message" is something you can't easily see, not something in plain view that everyone can see. For the record, I thought the ad was wonderful. I wish more candidates would do the same, though if they did, I doubt any of them would receive half the criticism Huckabee got for running his.

Christmas Surprise - Tridentine On Cover Of 'U.S. News'

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Maybe we should all run out and buy a copy.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

'Catholic Online' Interviews Mike Huckabee

(Catholic Online) - In the midst of campaigning for the Republican Presidential nomination, the former Governor of Arkansas, Mike Huckabee, whose rise in the polls has been the story of the hour, took time out of his busy campaign schedule to speak with Catholic Online on issues of concern to Catholics....

read full interview here

Friday, December 14, 2007

Catholics MUST Share Faith -- Vatican Insists!

(CWN) - Vatican, Dec. 14, 2007 (CWNews.com) - Acknowledging "a growing confusion about the Church's missionary mandate," the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) has released an important 19-page document strongly defending the right and duty of all Catholics to spread the faith.

The CDF document-- which was released on December 14, accompanied by an unusually strong publicity effort-- responds to criticisms of Catholic efforts to bring new believers into the Church. The document states at the outset (quoting Pope John Paul II (bio - news)), "Every person has the right to hear the Good News." For Catholics, the CDF adds, "This right implies the corresponding duty to evangelize."

All believers, the CDF states, have a duty to participate in "the Christian mission of evangelization, which is to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

[An official summary of the CDF document is available on the Vatican web site.]

read full story here

Pope Condemns Al Gore

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Well, not specifically by name anyway, but Al Gore's recent Nobel Peace Prize certainly played a role in the Pope's comprehensive condemnation of global warming environmental hysteria and the ecology prophets of doom -- (Al Gore being their ring leader).

The Earth is getting warmer, that's an established scientific fact we've known for over 100 years. Yes, that's right. Scientists have been watching the average temperature on the planet increase for over 100 years. What a lot of people don't know is that for the last 150 years, we've been emerging from an ice age. Scientists officially call it the "Little-Ice-Age" and it started in the latter middle ages (around AD 1250), and lasted until the infancy of the United States of America (around AD 1800). Below is a chart chronicling average temperature for the last 2,000 years....



You'll notice in the graph above that the most recent period of global warming began around 1800, and will probably continue for some time. Scientists estimate that the last time the earth cycled into the same kind of extreme warming trend, we now appear to be in, was about 8,000 years ago. Alarmists frequently neglect to tell us that the planet Mars is also experiencing a similar emergence from an ice age. (read more here) Yes, that's right. Mars is going through global warming, just like Earth. Coincidence? Maybe it has something to do with those Martian SUVs and their alien carbon footprint? Or maybe it's something else? What could Mars and Earth have in common? Well, they're both planets in our solar system. Hmm. Solar system? Could the word "solar" have something to do with it? Could it be that perhaps the SUN is causing global warming, not only on Earth, but on Mars, and all inner planets of our solar system with an atmosphere?

Here's the science in a nutshell -- REAL SCIENCE I might add, not crackpot global warming hysteria. The sun emits cosmic rays. These cosmic rays influence the amount of cloud formation on the inner planets of the solar system with an atmosphere (Venus, Earth and Mars). Since Mercury and the Moon have no atmosphere, this does not apply to them. The more cosmic rays the sun emits, the more cloud formation increases on atmospheric planets. Cloud formation reflects ultraviolet sunlight, which in turn drops global temperatures. Okay, everybody got that? Don't worry, I'll review...
1. Solar cosmic rays cause planetary atmospheres to make more clouds.
2. Clouds reflect ultraviolet sunlight away from the Earth.
3. Less ultraviolet sunlight means lower global temperatures.

Okay, now we move on to science lesson #2. Solar disturbances (like sunspots) decrease the amount of cosmic rays the sun emits. That in turn reduces overall cloud cover on atmospheric planets (like Venus, Earth and Mars). Less cloud cover means more ultraviolet sunlight can get through, which heats the overall planet temperature. Here's the review...
1. Solar disturbances (like sunspots) decrease solar cosmic rays.
2. Less cosmic rays means less cloud cover on planetary atmospheres.
3. Less cloud cover means more ultraviolet sunlight gets through -- warming the planet.

Over the last 20 years, science has found increasing linkage between the number of solar disturbances (sunspots) and planetary temperatures here on Earth. See the following graph for details...


No matter how you slice it, the evidence of global warming on Mars cannot be denied either. It too correlates with sunspots. Mankind does not live on Mars. We have no "carbon footprint" there. What does this mean. It means the global warming environmental hysteria, pushed by Al Gore and his socialist cronies in the mainstream media and Hollywood, is nothing but hype! It's based on bad science, that really isn't even science. The biggest "greenhouse gas" in the atmosphere isn't even carbon. It's humidity! Yes, that's right, water molecules in the air have a far more significant effect on temperature than carbon does. In fact, any effect carbon has is minimal at best.

So along comes Pope Benedict XVI to put down the CULT of global warming environmentalism and the false prophets of ecological doom -- such as Al Gore. Before releasing his condemnation, Pope Benedict XVI ordered that the Vatican be renovated to become the most ecologically friendly nation on the planet -- so as to lead by example. The pope advocates a real and sincere kind of conservation of environmental resources, and an overall reduction of pollution, for no other reason than the fact that God Himself has charged mankind as the caretaker and steward of this planet. People MUST do what they can to protect and preserve this planet, but NOT at the expense of human suffering and lives. The kind of environmentalism that Al Gore advocates, along with the rest of his doomsday prophet ilk, is the kind of environmentalism that stunts development of the third world, resulting in human suffering. This is unacceptable, the pope tells us, and this "save the planet" cult must be replaced with a Christian form of ecological conservation that puts the welfare of human beings first...
(Daily Mail) - Pope Benedict XVI has launched a surprise attack on climate change prophets of doom, warning them that any solutions to global warming must be based on firm evidence and not on dubious ideology.

The leader of more than a billion Roman Catholics suggested that fears over man-made emissions melting the ice caps and causing a wave of unprecedented disasters were nothing more than scare-mongering.

The German-born Pontiff said that while some concerns may be valid it was vital that the international community based its policies on science rather than the dogma of the environmentalist movement.

His remarks will be made in his annual message for World Peace Day on January 1, but they were released as delegates from all over the world convened on the Indonesian holiday island of Bali for UN climate change talks.

The 80-year-old Pope said the world needed to care for the environment but not to the point where the welfare of animals and plants was given a greater priority than that of mankind....

read full story here

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Huckabee Gets Approval From Catholic Voters

(Catholic Online) - The last Republican primary debate before Iowa is over. The emergence of former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee to front runner status is the story of the hour. Catholics are starting to look seriously at this new former Governor from Hope named Huckabee. Many like what they see....

read full story here
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: As mentioned in the Huckabee section of this blog, Mike Huckabee is the most viable presidential candidate running for office in either party, that is most in line with Catholic Social Justice. If nominated the Catholic vote WILL go to him. Especially since the introduction of the pope's aggressive '3-point Agenda for Voting Catholics.' Supporters may join over a hundred Catholics nationwide, praying the Rosary for Huckabee and America.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Huckabee, Mormonism and the Media Agenda

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Mike Huckabee is in the lead, and his rapid surge has frightened not only his Republican rivals, but even the mainstream media, which seeks to divide and conquer the Republican Party in the 2008 election.

Mike Huckabee is also an ordained Southern Baptist minister, and served as one prior to becoming governor of Arkansas. This has made Huckabee an easy target for the mainstream media, which has also treated Romney unfairly in regards to his Mormon religion. Now the media seeks to pit Evangelicals against Mormons by pitting Huckabee against Romney on the issue of religion.

Ever since Huckabee entered the race for the presidency, he's been hammered by stupid questions from the media, seeking to exploit religious beliefs held by Evangelicals which the mainstream media believes to be superstitious and backward. Case in point, Huckabee regularly gets questions about evolution vs. creationism in political debates -- a question hardly worth asking of a presidential candidate.

Now it would appear Mike has stepped in it again. This time it was in an interview he granted to the New York Times. Apparently responding to yet another ridiculous question, this time about Romney's religion, the former governor said he thought it was a "religion" and not a "cult," as is commonly believed by many Evangelicals. (I would have to agree with the governor on this point. Mormonism is not a cult. It does not display any of the characteristics of a cult. It is in fact becoming a major worldwide religion.) But then, thinking out loud, the governor admitted he didn't know much about it and asked: "Don't Mormons believe that Jesus and the devil are brothers?"

Now this is a common misunderstanding among Evangelicals. It should be no surprise that the governor asked this, but keep in mind that he did ASK it as a question. He didn't declare it as a statement. There is a difference. Furthermore, he ASKED it after admitting that he didn't know much about the religion.

The media salivated at the opportunity. Here they had another chance to kill two birds with one stone. With this simple question, based on a common Evangelical misunderstanding, the media had an opportunity to spoil Huckabee's surge in the polls, and simultaneously make all Evangelicals look bigoted and intolerant.

Being a Catholic in the Bible Belt, I am no stranger to Evangelical misunderstandings. But I have learned that misunderstandings are often based on a skin of truth, even if it's cloaked with error. Evangelicals may be ignorant about some things, but they're not stupid. There is usually a good reason why they have misunderstandings about other religious organizations, and these errors are often propagated by the very same media that likes to use them as slander against those who believe them.

Case in point, as a Catholic, I can't begin to tell you how many times Evangelicals have asked me why I seek forgiveness from a priest (through confession) instead of asking God directly. I inform them that this is not the case at all, and when we Catholics go to confession, we do ask God (directly) for forgiveness, and the priest merely acts as a representative of Christ to bless us and proclaim our forgiveness. But you see, this stereotype is actually fostered by the media, because we constantly see erroneous portrayals of Catholic confessionals (and what goes on there) in movies and television. In these portrayals, we often see a skin of the truth, shrouded in a cloak of errors.  Suffice it to say that though I go regularly, I have NEVER been in an actual confession that looks or sounds anything like what you see in the movies.  Priests don't call us their "children," and the confession rite always starts with "Bless me father for I have sinned," not what you see in the movies - "Forgive me father for I have sinned."  Do you see how the stereotype is perpetuated now?  The media, both in movies and television, regularly change the first word of the confession rite from "bless" to "forgive," thus making it sound like the penitent is asking the priest (instead of God) for forgiveness.  When in reality, what Catholics actually ask of the priest is a blessing.  Granted, part of that blessing is absolution, but in the process of receiving this blessing, we make our confession to God, and ask God for his forgiveness.  But you would never know that by watching a movie or television show.  

So that being said, let's look and see what the 'Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints' (Mormonism) teaches about Jesus and the Devil. The authoritative Encyclopedia of Mormonism, published in 1992, does not refer to Jesus and Satan as brothers. It speaks of Jesus as the son of God and of Satan as a fallen angel.

An angel, according to Mormonism is "a son of God," but that is not the same as "the only-beggoton Son of God." Mormon theology differs from classical Christian theology in many respects, and one major area is that Mormonism does not accept the historical Christian dogma of the Trinity. (Incidentally, this is the major issue qualifying Mormonism as a distinct religion in and of itself.) Now because Mormons reject the Trinitarian dogma, the status of Jesus as the "only-begotton Son" is somewhat downgraded from the classical Christian understanding. Mormons specify that when they say "only-begotton Son of God" they mean that Jesus was unique in the sense that he the only "Son of God" begotten in the flesh, and the angels do not share this distinction. Granted, this is a significant departure from classical Christian theology, but that being said, there is a clear distinction between Jesus and the angels -- especially a fallen angel, or the devil. The devil, according to Mormonism, was merely "a son of God" (an angelic spirit) who was cast out of heaven and never made flesh and blood.

Some Evangelicals correctly recognize in Mormonism a significant downgrade of Jesus' status, (compared to classical Christian theology under the Trinitarian dogma). However, they often make the mistake of assuming this downgrading automatically puts Jesus on the same level as the angels in heaven, which would include Lucifer (who eventually became the devil). That being the case, they call Jesus and Lucifer "brother spirits" as if there were no distinction between them at all.  So what we have here is a skin of truth, cloaked in error. Mormonism does make a significant distinction between Jesus and the devil, but because this distinction is not as profound as the historical Christian distinction under the Trinitarian dogma, some Evangelicals jump to conclusions and assert that Mormonism teaches no difference between Jesus and the angels at all -- thus making Jesus and Lucifer "brothers."  This is an error of course, but it is a common one.

Governor Mike Huckabee DID NOT assert this error to be true. He simply asked if it was true. Though I suspect this was merely in answer to another stupid media question, I suspect Huckabee would have done better if he had kept this question to himself, and asked Governor Romney in private some time after the GOP convention. I'm sure Governor Huckabee is probably thinking the same thing right now. Clearly this is a political gaff, but in the overall scheme of things, because it is a common misbelief among Evangelicals, its a relatively small one.

Let's not forget who is fueling this issue. It's not Governor Huckabee nor his campaign. Romney's campaign naturally recoiled at the news of Huckabee's question, and at the same time saw it as an opportunity to take some swipes at the new Republican frontrunner. Make no mistake about it, however, it's the mainstream media that is driving this whole thing. Let us never forget that over 80% of the mainstream news media is Liberal and regularly votes Democrat. We know who their favorite is in this race, and it's not Huckabee or Romney. The media is trying to set the stage for Hillary to win in November, and in order to do this, it would be helpful if Republicans were bitterly divided and resentful toward each other. This is why the media seeks to pit Mormons against Evangelicals and Evangelicals against Mormons.

So Huckabee is specifically asked about Romney's Mormon faith, and any gaffs he makes in his admitted ignorance of the religion, is played to Mormons in the hope of getting them upset. The idea being that if Huckabee gets the GOP nomination, most Mormons will be so angry at him, they won't vote for him. The same applies vice versa, by constantly asking Romney about his Mormon beliefs, so Evangelicals will be constantly reminded that he is a Mormon, and fail to look at his qualifications as a candidate. That way if he gets the GOP nomination, the only thing Evangelicals will know about him is that he's a Mormon -- and not much else. That won't excite them too much, and the media hopes they'll stay home on election day.

We have to understand that everything the media does from now on will be viewed in the template of Election 2008 and insuring a Democratic victory. Mormons are not the enemy here, and neither are Evangelicals. We need to give Huckabee a pass on gaffs like the one he made to the New York Times, and we need to stand behind what Romney said about religion in his recent "Faith in America" speech. Both of these men have been unfairly assaulted by a hostile news media, seeking to use them as pawns in pitting one conservative group (Mormons) against another (Evangelicals), all for the sake of helping Hillary win in November of 2008. As social conservatives, we need to keep focused on what matters to us, not on what the media would try to sidetrack us into.

ADDENDUM:
Governor Mike Huckabee has personally apologized to Governor Mit Romney over the comment/question he made to The New York Times. You can read the full story here. In the story, more has come out about the interview. Yes, it looks like it was a trap. New York Times reporter Zev Chafets talked with Governor Huckabee for hours, repeatedly trying to get him to comment on Romney's religion, asking him if he thought it was a "cult." Huckabee told CNN that his quote was taken out of context, and that the question was directed at the reporter, because the reporter continued to talk about Mormonism in such a way that the Governor thought Chafets was an expert on Mormonism. So he asked the reporter about something he had heard, not knowing if it was true, and expecting to get an educated answer from a knowledgeable man. Instead, it looks like Governor Huckabee got bushwacked! The reporter used this question, which he solicited, as a headline in the preview for the story. It looks like what we got here is a classic case of "yellow journalism."

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

U.S. Congress Goes Anti-Catholic -- Again!

THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: This isn't the first time the Democrat controlled Congress has pulled an anti-Catholic stunt, and it probably won't be the last time. Now the Democrats in the Senate have stalled the confirmation of Bush's nomination for U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, potentially leaving the post vacant while the pope is visiting the United States in April. Why? Because Harvard Law School professor Mary Ann Glendon is Pro-Life, and that kind of ideology is OFFENSIVE to the Democrats in Congress. Glendon is opposed by "Catholics for a Free Choice," a known ANTI-CATHOLIC organization that once attempted to expel the Vatican from the U.N. "Catholics for a Free Choice" now has the ear of the Democrats in the Senate, who would just assume send a clear message to the pope this April. By not having a U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, the United States Congress is loudly and clearly telling Pope Benedict XVI that it will have no open channels with the Vatican unless the Catholic Church changes its teachings on abortion. The message will resonate even louder once the pope visits the U.S. in April.

Readers of this blog should by now be well acquainted with the open hostility displayed to Catholicism by many United States Congressmen in the Democratic Party. Even those who insist on calling themselves "Catholic" (why I don't know) have led the chorus of anti-Catholic hostility. All of this falls under the new form of 'Secular Anti-Catholicism' which opposes the Church primarily on its moral teachings.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Guns In Church

(WBKO) - A law enforcement official says the deadly rampages at a megachurch and a missionary training school may have been carried out by the same person-- Matthew Murray, a 24-year-old suburban Denver man who "hated Christians."

It was a day of tragedy for Colorado's religious community....

read full story here

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(FoxNews.com) - Murray, who was kicked out of a missionary training center where the first shooting occurred, is believed to have posted the message on a Web site for people who have left evangelical religious groups. His most recent post was Sunday morning in the hours between his attacks in Arvada and Colorado Springs, according to KUSA-TV in Denver, which first reported on the writings.

"You Christians brought this on yourselves," Murray wrote, according to the station, which did not identify the site. "All I want to do is kill and injure as many of you ... as I can especially Christians who are to blame for most of the problems in the world."...

read full story here
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: As a Missourian, I live in a very gun-owner friendly state. Missouri not only has virtually no restrictions on gun ownership, but people are allowed to carry guns here (unconcealed) without a permit or a license. With a permit, the gun may even be concealed. Missouri is a "right to carry" state, and here literally anyone (without a criminal record) can pack heat. Missouri is also very friendly to people who use their firearms to protect themselves and their families. Missouri's "Castle Doctrine" allows anyone to shoot and kill a home intruder without fear of criminal prosecution. The law even extends to a vehicle or "dwelling" which is lawfully occupied. Missourians may shoot to defend themselves from "death, serious injury, or any forcible felony." In short, Missouri is very gun-owner friendly.

Crime statistics clearly demonstrate that sates which allow their citizens to defend themselves almost immediately report a drop in random violent crime. (When everyone is armed, what's a criminal to do?)

So now we tread into the sensitive subject of guns in church. Understandably, people want to think of a church as a sacred house of worship -- free from violence and bloodshed. That's a pleasant thought, but unfortunately, not a very realistic one. As we recently saw in Colorado, churches (like shopping malls, colleges and public schools) can be subject to the violent rampages of disturbed individuals hell bent on killing as many people as they can before they're stopped by force or they kill themselves. To which The Catholic Knight is forced to ask the most unsettling questions: Is anybody reading this glad none of those Sunday worshipers in Colorado were armed? Is anybody reading this glad none of those mall shoppers in Nebraska were armed?

Thankfully the church in Colorado had enough foresight to hire a security guard, realizing that all those people in the pews on Sunday mornings were literally "sitting ducks!" Thankfully, this brave security guard had the guts to face the gunman and pull the trigger. I can't help but wonder though, what would have happened if a dozen or so worshipers also had firearms? Would the carnage have ended sooner? Would anybody but the gunman have been killed? Unfortunately we will never know the answer to those questions.

This isn't the first time something like this has happened, and sadly, it won't be the last. With public hostility toward Christianity on the rise -- especially in Hollywood films and Left-wing media bias -- I suspect these kinds of incidents will become more commonplace in the years ahead, as mentally unstable people increasingly feel more "justified" in killing Christians. One has to consider the consequences of going into a church completely unarmed (essentially helpless) and sitting down in a pew with your back toward an entrance door anyone can walk though with any kind of a weapon. What would you do? How would you escape? Could you escape?

Yes, we live in troubling times, and yes we Western Christians have it better than Christians who still suffer and die for their faith in Islamic and Communist countries all around the world. But as Americans, our nation is built on the idea of religious freedom. Our nation's founding document acknowledges that as a God-given right. It is a right that must be protected -- even with deadly force when necessary. When a madman comes into a church, blowing holes in the backs of innocent worshipers, is it not the God-given right of any person in there to turn around and shoot back?

I know the U.S. Catholic Bishops would take serious issue with me on this, and I'm okay with that. This is an issue that really needs to be discussed. When we are called to meet our Sunday obligation, does that also mean we are called to become "sitting ducks?" When we husbands and fathers are called to bring our families to mass, does that also mean we are called to no longer protect them from harm? We have to consider these things. Either we must be allowed to bring our guns into the local church with us, or else the local church must take the responsibility of hiring armed security guards to protect us. It has to be one or the other.

Your thoughts?