original blog entry on Calvary Chapel's anti-Catholicism, and nothing has changed. (Not that I really expected it to.) In between jumps to my snowbird hideaway down South, I returned home briefly to keep the Knight's armory running well. On the way home from one of my errands in town today I decided to tune into a local Calvary Chapel radio station broadcasted via satellite syndication. (I'm not sure what possessed me to do it.) Anyway, the station manager had just gotten Chuck Smith on the air for some questions from callers. One caller mentioned that his girlfriend is Catholic, and he occasionally attends mass with her. He had a question about the apparition of "Our Lady of Guadalupe." It wasn't five minutes into the show, but Chuck Smith had plenty to say.
First, he proclaimed that "Our Lady of Guadalupe" is nothing more than a demonic spirit, and the apparition itself is a deception of the devil. He advised the caller to avoid anything to do with it. Second, he then went on, as if that weren't enough, to accuse the Catholic Church of idolatry and apostasy. He did this in his usual soft-spoken gentle manner, (you could almost hear the smile on his face), which I used to think was charity. Twelve years after having left Calvary Chapel, it's now starting to sound a little creepy. Anyway, he used the classic strawman fallacy. He blatantly misrepresented Catholic teaching, claiming the Church places Mary above Christ. Then he proceeded to tear down the strawman by saying that anytime someone (i.e. The Catholic Church) puts someone or something above Christ, we know that can't be from God. Of course the caller was gushing with gratitude for Pastor Smith's pontification, and the station manager then proceeded to advise him, and anyone else listening, to stay away from the Catholic mass and go to Calvary Chapel instead.
The more things change, the more they stay the same, especially when it comes to the anti-Catholicism coming out of Calvary Chapel. I'm pleased that this particular rant against the Church came from the top Calvary Chapel pastor himself - Chuck Smith - the man who started the whole chain. It demonstrates what I've been saying all along in this blog entry. The founder of Calvary Chapel is a raving anti-Catholic, and the apples never fall far from the tree. The way the founder goes, so do the followers. This type of anti-Catholicism can be found among Calvary Chapel pastors from coast to coast. Some are more virulent than others, but virtually all of them look to Pastor Chuck Smith as their example and teacher. He is, after all, the closest thing to a "pope" there will ever be in the Calvary Chapel network.
Pastor Chuck Smith's dishonest dealing with Catholic doctrine is inexcusable. He is an educated man who has been in ministry for decades. He's the virtual "head" of an international nondenominational-affiliation. He has missionary outreaches in Latin America and Rome. You cannot tell me this man is ignorant of authentic Catholic Church doctrine. He knows full well the Catholic Church DOES NOT place Mary above Christ in any way. He knows the Church teaches that Mary is subordinate to Christ, and that everything she is comes directly from Christ. His opinions about Marian apparitions are his business, but to tell people they are demonic is to be disingenuous to say the least. No demonic spirit leads people to Christ, and if "Our Lady of Guadalupe" was supposed to be some Satanic deception, than it was a miserable failure on the devil's part, because it resulted in over a million people (Native Americans) accepting Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. It has since inspired the Christian faith of tens of millions. If it was supposed to be a lie of the devil, than it sure backfired on him. Of course we know the truth. Mary appeared to Saint Juan Diego to bring his people to her Son - Jesus Christ - and that she did in the most startling and miraculous way.
So why the strawman fallacy? Why would an educated man, who surely knows what the Church teaches in regards to Mary, deliberately twist and distort Church doctrine in such a way so he could easily tear down the strawman he created? Well, I can't get inside Chuck Smith's head, so I really don't know with absolute certainty why he did it. But I do have an opinion, and I think it's a fairly educated one with some inside information. You see, Calvary Chapel started in Southern California which is a heavily Catholic portion of the United States. Most of the people who attend Calvary Chapel are former Catholics. I don't have an exact percentage, but I would say that at least half would be a fair guess. Most of them left the Catholic Church during the turbulent times of the 1970s - 90s. It was during this time that Chuck Smith, and his ministry disciples began their anti-Catholic propaganda, and WOW did it take off! They brought scores of new "members" into their affiliations with this nonsense, combined with their apocalyptic teachings on current events and typical alter calls for instantaneous salvation. It was (and still is) a formula that works. Every Sunday in Southern California, Calvary Chapels are packed to standing room only. Smith and his ministry disciples have now taken their "Gospel according to Calvary Chapel" into Latin America, and they've even been so bold as to bring it to Rome as well, under the very shadow of the Vatican. The formula works. It draws away Catholics, and turns them against Rome in the most virulent way. It also fills the pews at Calvary Chapels, as well as the collection plates. You see, in my opinion, the reason why Chuck Smith doesn't change is because he can't change. If he ever admits that he was wrong about something the Catholic Church teaches, it would threaten his whole organization. In Southern California alone, at least half of his ministry is to former Catholics. An admission of error, especially after having preached this stuff for so long, would cause the Calvary Chapel faithful to begin questioning the whole system, and that is something that neither Chuck Smith nor his ministry disciples can risk.
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: I can't help but comment on the video above which has made it's way around the Internet, FoxNews and the conservative talk radio circuit. It is positively brilliant, and this gentleman from the UK couldn't have possibly said it any better. The European Union is a Masonic pipe-dream, as is the clandestine North American Union, as well as the State of Israel. All three are doomed to the dust bin of history. However, before that happens, there must first be some upheavals, and they will come, perhaps sooner rather than later. Just a few days after this video hit YouTube, the United States announced that it is willing to bailout the European Union. (I'm not sure where that money is coming from.) At this rate the printing presses at the U.S. Treasury Department will likely overheat and melt down.
Be cautious of any upturn in the market, as it is likely to be an illusion. Whenever Washington promises to spend more money, the market usually goes up, for a little while that is. We all know what awaits us on the other side of this bubble the Federal Reserve is creating.
The European Union will collapse eventually. This we can be sure of. There will be chaos in the streets of Europe too. This also we can be sure of. The only questions that remain are these. Is NOW the time we've been waiting for? Is this the beginning of what we were warned of in advance by Our Lady of Fatima and all the other approved Catholic prophecies? Is the time of Great Chastisement here, and the return of monarchy just around the corner?
I don't know the answers to these questions - not yet anyway - but I do know this. We are called to be a light to the world, not hide in a hole. The bunker mentality of stockpiling and arming to the teeth will not get you through this. The coming collapse is going to be too big and all encompassing. No man can be an island.
If you want to know the way through this, here is is. First, get involved in your local parish, and make sure you have a close relationship with your priest. Share your concerns with him, and ask him to help get the parish networked and prepared to be a light in the coming darkness. Yes, stockpiling a couple weeks (or months) of basic food stuffs is probably a good idea (for any situation really). Having a gun or two for home defense, probably isn't a bad idea either, if you are competent to handle one and it is legal for you to do so. However, what is going to get us through this is not pantries and bullets. What is going to get is through this is a strong network of friends and neighbors. This is why it is SOOOO incredibly important for pastors to get on the ball and start calling upon their parishes to network and organize. If your priest won't do it, than start networking in your parish yourself, any way you can, so long as you don't usurp your priest's authority. Second, remember the key principle of Catholic Social Teaching - SUBSIDIARITY!!! When everybody else is crying out for centralization and/or government crack downs, remember the teaching of the Church. Subsidiarity is the one and only political method that will work. Without it, we are doomed to repeat the errors of the Soviet Union, and we all know where that led them. Third and finally, cling to your faith. This is the only thing we all have left when it comes down to the wire. Practice your faith, pray the Rosary, or the Office, or whatever private devotion keeps you on the straight and narrow. Go to mass - regularly. Be Catholic! and be not afraid.
(Washington Post) - The Vatican on Thursday released documentation showing Pope Benedict XVI sought as early as 1988 to find quicker ways to permanently remove priests who raped and molested children but was rebuffed.
A 1988 letter from then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger could serve as the Vatican's best defense to date that the future pope wanted to quickly remove pedophile priests far earlier than previously known but found himself stymied by church law.
The letter, republished in Thursday's Vatican newspaper, shows that Ratzinger complained that church law made it exceedingly difficult to remove abusers if they didn't request to be laicized voluntarily.
He asked to get around the problem by finding "a quicker and simpler procedure" than a cumbersome church trial to punish those priests who "during their ministry were found guilty of grave and scandalous behavior."
He was turned down on the grounds that the priests' ability to defend themselves would be compromised....
This brings me to a word of caution for my readers, as the now infamous Wikileaks claims it will soon unleash a cache of secret communications regarding the Vatican. We don't know yet what the nature of these communications are, but I suspect they do not involve internal Vatican communications. I suspect rather they involve private communications between United States diplomats about the Vatican, and perhaps may give us some more insight into how Washington DC views the pope, the Holy See and maybe even the Catholic Church. That's just a suspicion on my part, but I think a fairly educated one. I suppose we'll soon find out.
In regards to the pope and the media, how can I not mention the recent condom fiasco. I have only two things to say about this. First, the pope DID NOT change any Church teaching in regards to condoms. Condoms are still condemned by the Church (and the pope) across the board. Second, what he did say in this private interview really doesn't matter. That's right, I said it really doesn't matter. Why? Because it was a PRIVATE INTERVIEW! Nothing contained in that interview bears the note of infallibility, nor does it even resemble an official pastoral teaching. The pope is simply talking candidly about his own private views. Now this may startle you a bit, so bear with me. If the pope had come out and said something like, "personally I don't have any problem with condoms," it again wouldn't matter one bit. Why? Because he would be speaking his personal opinion, and not proclaiming the teaching of the Church. You see, there have even been instances in history where known heretics have occupied the Chair of Peter. In spite of that however, they never once taught heresy from the Chair of Peter. That's because the office of the pope is protected by the Holy Spirit. In private however, when the pope is no longer exercising his pastoral role, he can pretty much say whatever he wants. That being said however, let me point out that the pope DID NOT condone the use of condoms in any way. He did not say that condoms were "okay" in certain circumstances. The mainstream news media has completely and totally twisted this subject out of context, which is typical of course. I believe no one says it better than Michael Voris....
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Finally, it's nice to see some of the major Catholic news outlets coming around to see what I've been telling you for over a year. The TEA Party movement is the greatest opportunity we Catholics have ever had at getting the message of Subsidiarity out to the general population....
(CNA) - This past election season "Tea Party" rallies were held around the country to protest government policy or to call for a new direction for the country. The movement even showed some substantial political clout at the ballot box. But is the movement compatible with Catholic social teaching?
CNA spoke about the movement with Dr. Steven Schneck, Director of the Institute for Policy Research & Catholic Studies at the Catholic University of America, and Fr. Robert Sirico, president of the Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Acton Institute.
Fr. Sirico described the Tea Party as "an amorphous thing" with a lot of variety and as a "populist, spontaneous movement." He thought its common themes include a desire for less government and a desire "to limit the power that politicians have over peoples' lives."
Participants find motivation in a variety of philosophies. Some have "well-developed Catholic sensibilities" while others' sensibilities are "almost anarchistic." He thought it was "remarkable" that the Tea Party could bring so many non-political people into the political process.
The Church's teaching on subsidiarity can meet these people and "augment what they're doing," he said, while also guarding against "the more fanatical edges of the tea party."
Fr. Sirico explained subsidiarity as being the principle that higher levels of society should not intervene in lower levels without "manifest and real necessity," and such intervention should only be temporary....
read full story here