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Saturday, June 26, 2004
The Troy Record: Probe Clears Hubbard
... The investigation team also concluded that local priest John Minkler was "very likely" the author of a 1995 letter, released over the winter by Aretakis, which claimed a number of priests, including Hubbard, were engaging in homosexual activities with one another, and with others outside the ministry.

Shortly after the letter was made public, Minkler committed suicide in his Watervliet home.

He did so just days after signing an affidavit drawn up by the diocese stating he was not the author of the letter.

The letter was supposed to be sent to deceased New York Archdiocese leader Cardinal John O'Conner, but White stated she was not sure if O'Conner ever actually saw the letter.

During her investigation, White received no cooperation from the Albany County District Attorney's Office on requests to see the suicide note Minkler left behind.

However, White claims she did speak with an unidentified person close to Minkler who stated the suicide note did "express displeasure against Hubbard," but mostly related information on the handling of his personal affairs.

On speculation that Minkler was coerced by the diocese to sign the affidavit, White claims that polygraph tests administered to Rev. Kenneth Doyle (who drafted the repudiation statement) and Hubbard found no wrongdoing on either of their parts.

White concludes that Minkler's letter had no basis in fact.

Instead, she believed Minkler was a conservative priest who found fault in the more liberal way Hubbard ran the diocese.

"It's no secret Minkler had a negative attitude toward Hubbard and the diocese," said White, "and his bias was such an extreme that it affected how he saw things."

If the 1995 letter "had no basis in fact", why wasn't it handled by Cardinal O'Connor in 1995? Why was it suppressed?

If the letter had no "basis in fact", why is the authorship of the letter such a hot issue in 2004? Why compel Minkler to deny authorship? Why did the contents of the letter with no basis in fact have any relevance in 2004?

The cliché applies: The investigation raises more questions that it answers.

The story according to White is: In 1995, an unidentifed priest (likely Minkler) wrote a letter accusing Hubbard of homosexuality and sexual crimes to Cardinal O'Connor. Only we don't know if O'Connor read it, but we know for certain it got back to Hubbard, who concluded that Minkler was the author. No investigation in 1995 in any case of what was described in the letter.

Fast forward to 2004, attorney Aretakis gets the letter in a document dump from the Archdiocese of New York and mentions it in a press conference.

Minkler is asked to sign an affadivit declaring he is not the author. Hubbard claims this was not coerced.

Minkler committed suicide.

The 1995 letter and the 2004 suicide note have not been made public. Cardinal O'Connor is dead and no one in the New York Archdiocese is on the record about the 1995 letter. Fr. Minkler is dead. Bishop Hubbard is cleared.

One has believe that Fr. Minker was either totally correct or a total lunatic. If he was merely mistaken, how could this have led to his death on February 14 or 15, 2004.

This Wanderer article by Paul Likoudis has more details.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:05 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Friday, June 25, 2004
NRO Maggie Gallagher: In Defense of Family
The Massachusetts governor stands up for marriage.

[Mitt Romney] asked the question we should all be asking: "Given the decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. . . Should we abandon marriage as we know it and as it was known by the framers of our Constitution? Has America been wrong about marriage for 200 plus years? Were generations that spanned thousands of years from all the civilizations of the world wrong about marriage? Are the philosophies and teachings of all the world's major religions simply wrong? Or is it more likely that four people among the seven that sat in a court in Massachusetts have erred? I believe that is the case."

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:08 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Fr. Rob Johansen. Thrown Back: "Too Severe a Penalty"
That's how Fr. Frans Jozef van Beeck, a Jesuit theologian, describes any attempt to deny communion to politicians whose zeal for abortion seems by far to exceed their zeal for the Catholic faith.

In a recent article in Commonweal, Fr. van Beeck relates witnessing the results of the Dutch Bishops' edict denying communion to those who collaborated in the Nazi roundup of Jews in Holland in 1942. Fr. van Beeck described his reaction to American bishops, such as Burke of St. Louis, announcing they would deny communion to pro-abortion politicians, in terms comparing it to the 1942 decree:

An excellent rebuttal to the claims made in Commonweal.

Study this because there will be people quoting van Beeck's arguments back at you.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:39 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Thursday, June 24, 2004
Hearst Newspapers. Helen Thomas: Religion has no place in politics
WASHINGTON -- Let's keep religion out of the presidential election campaign. Or is it too late?

Not since 1960 when John F. Kennedy's Catholicism was a big issue has religion played such a prominent role in a national election.

Kennedy confronted the issue head-on when he appeared before the Presbyterian Convention in Houston during the campaign and assured the ministers that he would not be taking orders from the Vatican if he were elected.

Banned from the White House, she continues to lash at President Bush.

Thomas also repeats the unsourced report from the National Catholic Reporter that the President asked "for the Vatican's help in encouraging them to be more outspoken."

She must have missed the Kerry talking points fax. The Kerry campaign wants this confrontation not be discussed in the media: It doesn't win Kerry any votes.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:12 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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This started over a charge of being a "bad" Catholic. AP changes it story. AP via SF Chronicle

AP via Wall Street Journal (paid subs. reqd.)

The original version.

WASHINGTON (AP)--U.S. Vice President Cheney cursed at Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy during a confrontation on the Senate floor while members were having their annual group picture taken earlier this week, Leahy and Senate sources said Thursday.

Senate aides with knowledge of the encounter Tuesday said the vice president confronted Leahy about some of the Democrat's criticism about alleged improprieties in Iraq military contracts awarded to Halliburton Co. (HAL). Cheney, who as vice president is president of the Senate, is a former chief executive officer of Halliburton.

Leahy responded by saying the vice president had once called him a "bad" Catholic.

Cheney then responded, "F--- off" or "F--- you," two aides said, both speaking on condition of anonymity.

Leahy, D-Vt., confirmed that the confrontation took place but would not provide details.

"I think he was just having a bad day," Leahy said. "I was kind of shocked to hear that kind of language on the floor."

Cheney's office also wouldn't go into detail, but confirmed the two men traded remarks.

"That doesn't sound like language that the vice president would use, but there was a frank exchange of views," said Kevin Kellems, a spokesman for Cheney.

The updated version of this:

Leahy responded by criticizing the White House for standing by allies who had accused Democrats of being anti-Catholic last year in opposing one of President Bush's judicial nominees, said one Senate aide, speaking on condition of anonymity.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:58 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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BBC: What is a superdollar?
The superdollar is the name given to an almost perfect forgery of an American banknote.

Millions of dollars of the fake cash have been passed into circulation since its existence was first noticed over a decade ago.

The money, officially known as Note Family - C14342, is thought to originate from communist North Korea.

Experts believe that the money is being produced and flooded into the system, mostly by North Korean diplomats as they travel abroad.

It is also circulated by criminals - with the Russian mafia and even Republican organisations in Northern Ireland involved in the distribution process.

North Korea. If they could only direct their energy towards creating goods and services for their own people.

North Korea. Part of the Axis of Evil

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:43 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Bishop Hubbard (Albany N.Y. Update)

(1) Albany Times-Union: Albany bishop inquiry complete

A former federal prosecutor who has spent four months investigating allegations of sexual misconduct against Bishop Howard Hubbard has completed her probe and plans to release the results today.

Mary Jo White has scheduled a news conference for 10 a.m. at Albany Law School. White said she will honor her promise to make the report public at the same time it is submitted to the Sexual Misconduct Review Board of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany.

(2) Albany Times-Union: Report clears Hubbard

A former federal prosecutor who spent four months investigating allegations of sexual misconduct against Bishop Howard Hubbard said there was no evidence to substantiate the allegations against the bishop.

(3) Fox 23 TV: Bishop Hubbard Cleared

During the probe, investigators were tipped off about a priest known as "The Bishop" who resembled Hubbard and frequented Washington Park during the 1970s and 1980s. The priest, who investigators would not identify, was interviewed and admitted engaging in homosexual acts. Though he denied identifying himself as "The Bishop," investigators said the priest failed a lie detector test.
I had low expectations of this so-called investigation from the start. No smoking gun.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 6:35 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Scare Quote Watch

AP: SF Bishop say Catholic politicians must see "evil of abortion"

SAN FRANCISCO - The city's Archbishop says all members of the church, including Catholic politicians, must accept its teaching on the "evil of abortion" if they want remain "in full communion with the faith of the church."

So recently after the Regan funeral in which we were again treated to seeing the Soviet Union described as an "evil empire" and not an evil empire.

When it comes to the editors at the AP, abortion is apparently neither good nor evil.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:56 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung: [In Germany] Catholic Church running out of candidates for priesthood

The article is pretty much what you would expect. What's notable is one of the ways they plan to attract new priests:

"The ideas include improving priests' living and working conditions."

Is the living and working conditions really the thing that's preventing vocations in Europe?

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 4:49 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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My gripe of the day.

Non-fiction books over 250 pages without an index. arghhh...

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:37 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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A word frequency count for St. Blog's Parish

catholic 4918
church 3425
stblogs 3040
family 2298
love 1677
christ 1500
john 1434
holy 1363
jesus 1230
father 1124
faith 1100
abortion 1025
uk 992
mass 973
heart 972
lord 903
book 894
david 879
bishops 849
prayer 823
children 814
die 808
mary 803
creator 801
parish 797
mother 797
catholics 791
war 752
christian 742
input 741
vatican 740
thought 737
human 729
president 728
american 711
paul 704
communion 699
believe 682
reagan 681
pope 677
bush 673
alexander 661
pray 648
members 647
hope 646
death 630
school 622
religious 620
priest 617
law 612
bishop 605
kerry 589
truth 588
mark 574
marriage 573
books 565
religion 558
isn 554
son 553
music 549
course 549
amazon 541
house 536
city 518
vote 517
light 515
young 506
culture 504
personal 503
spirit 501
live 498
feel 498
child 496
mind 493
march 491
society 491
movie 487
friend 487
friends 477
political 474
april 472
eucharist 471
reason 467
question 465
blessed 460
morning 459
peace 455
america 454
thanks 449
interesting 449
film 442
saint 440
thomas 437
bettnet 436
priests 436
sacred 435
madskills 435
sin 434
following 433
english 433
splendoroftruth 421
hand 417
cardinal 412
cross 408
iraq 407
united 403
power 403
thoughts 401
university 399
woman 397
soul 397
grace 396
sex 396
lives 392
saints 391
happy 383
rest 383
teaching 368
moral 368
won 362
hear 361
looking 361
simply 360
early 359
took 356
liturgy 356
spiritual 355
repeat 354
peter 353
lost 353
stories 353
bible 352
current 352
evil 352
office 350
politics 349
coming 347
heaven 346
important 345
trying 345
local 343
faithful 342
hard 341
saying 341
hidden 340
art 337
prayers 337
parents 335
land 335
passion 334
pretty 331
idea 331
wife 328
mercy 327
gave 326
understand 325
college 314
kids 311
gay 304
catholicism 300
divine 297
shea 285
baby 284
blood 275
theology 274
latin 273
diocese 271
nature 271

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:37 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Wednesday, June 23, 2004
665 Neighbor of the Beast

665 Neighbor of the Beast

Heaven for the atmosphere, hell for the company

I'm trying to decide what sort of place this t-shirt would fit in.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:32 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Tabernacle Stolen From Middlebourne Catholic Church
MIDDLEBOURNE - Members of the St. Lawrence Catholic Mission in Middlebourne have issued a plea for the return of the church's tabernacle, which was stolen sometime last week. The missing cabinet-like enclosure, which houses consecrated wafers, or Hosts, used during Holy Communion services, was among several items taken from the Stealey Street church.

The tabernacle, made of a gold-plated metal, is about 1.5 feet high and 1 foot in diameter. Inside it is a ciborium, a covered cup used to hold the consecrated wafers.

"This is an extreme violation of the basis of our entire Catholic faith," Larry Prunty, who serves as chairman of the parish council, said Monday. "Without the tabernacle, our church is empty. They have taken the body of Christ from our church."

Blogger credit to Domenico Bettinelli

I don't think this is your typical steal 'n sell on Ebay. (i.e. ciboria, chalices, etc.)

I think this is motivated by anti-Catholicism.

We had a lowlife go from Church to Church with a sledge hammer smashing the statues of Mary the Mother of God here in New York City a few years back.

I wonder if this story will go national.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:36 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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UK Guardian: US Catholic diocese threatens bankruptcy after abuse payouts
A Catholic diocese in Arizona, facing a series of potentially ruinous civil lawsuits that allege sexual abuse by its priests, is preparing to declare itself bankrupt.

The move would be the first time that a diocese has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the US. In an open letter read to parishioners on Sunday, the Bishop of Tucson, Gerald Kicanas, described it as "the only option" available.

Under the scheme, the diocese would be allowed to continue to operate while reorganising its debt.

But the move has provoked protests, with critics arguing that it would enable the church to avoid its moral responsibility and that the threat of filing for bankruptcy is a tactic to make the alleged victims of sexual abuse feel guilty.

"I don't believe that the church has to or will file for bankruptcy," said Barbara Blaine, the president of Snap, the Survivors' Network of those Abused by Priests.

"The only way for anyone to know the truth is for the church to open up its books. It's common for the bishops to threaten to file bankruptcy, but no one has yet, and the Vatican would not allow anyone to do so because it would mean handing over control of its assets to a civil court.

Bankruptcy means a representative of the court appointed to examine all the financial records of the petitioner, and perhaps even representatives of the creditors pouring over the assets, liabilities, income, and expenses.

I still think this is one big bluff.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:17 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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I've got to disagree with Karl Keating here
San Diego Union-Tribune: S.D. bishop won't ban politicians from sacrament

..."What Bishop Brom, I think, is saying is that there are certain things that are right or wrong and he's leaving it up to the individual to recognize whether he has committed those things – and if he has, then Bishop Brom expects him to do the right thing and not go up to Communion," said Karl Keating, president of the El Cajon-based Catholic Answers, a lay-led evangelistic organization.

The right thing is to repent from the sin -- and stop advocating abortion and profess what the Church teaches: the right to life exists from the moment of conception to natural death.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:46 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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George Marlin. New York Post: The Bishops and the Pols
Catholic bishops who have criticized or denied communion to recalcitrant Catholic politicians have been under assault, of late, by left-wing ideologues.

Claiming he is a "believing and practicing Catholic," Sen. John Kerry has declared: "I don't tell church officials what to do, and church officials shouldn't tell American politicians what to do in the context of our public life." Kerry's colleague, Sen. Ted Kennedy, even questioned the pope's integrity when it comes to his rules for distributing communion.

Weary of self-righteous indignation from politicians who claim to be loyal sons of the church while opposing its tenets, I have prepared a refresher course on the basics:

Aren't liberals correct to say bishops step over the line and violate separation of church and state when they speak out on controversial public issues like abortion?

In fact, the liberals are being hypocrites. In the 1960s, the left lauded the bishop of New Orleans for excommunicating racist Catholics opposing the civil rights movement. When the bishops criticized President Ronald Reagan's nuclear and fiscal policies in "The Challenge of Peace" (1983) and "Economic Justice for All" (1986), liberals applauded. The left trots out "separation of church and state" only when it disagrees with Catholic pronouncements.

Why does the Catholic hierarchy insist on speaking out on controversial public issues?

Bishops, as shepherds, have a duty to their flocks to offer guidance on the church's moral teachings. They also have an obligation to correct any person — especially Catholic politicians — who misleads or sows confusion on church doctrine. Clergy of all faiths explain to their co-religionists how their religions apply in the temporal world. Catholics are no different.

Why single out the abortion issue? Why don't the bishops censure Catholic officials who support the death penalty or the war in Iraq?

Of the three issues, only abortion is intrinsically wrong because it destroys innocent human life. The American bishops have consistently stated that abortion "is never morally acceptable." In his 2002 commentary, Pope John Paul II bluntly stated that "lawmaking bodies have a grave and clear obligation to oppose any law that attacks human life." And in their June 18, 2004, statement "Catholics in Political Life," the bishops declared that politicians who promote abortion rights are "cooperating in evil."

On the death penalty and the war, the church does not hold a univocal view. While the pope and the U.S. bishops oppose to the death penalty, they have never decried the church's stand on capital punishment. In fact, in their 1980 pastoral letter, they insisted that "the state has the right to take the life of a person guilty of a serious crime." Catholics are free to oppose using the death penalty in particular situations, but Catholics are not free to condemn it in the name of the church as always morally wrong.

Similarly, while the Vatican opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Catholics are free to use prudential judgment in determining if it was just. The U.S. Conference of Catholic bishops have stressed that "reasonable people can disagree about the necessity of using force" to overthrow Saddam.

Why only threaten to deny communion to Democrats?

It should be understood that Pope John Paul II on April 17, 2003, told bishops throughout the world that they have an obligation to deny Holy Communions to Catholics demonstrating "outward conduct which is seriously, clearly and steadfastly contrary to the moral norm."

And most pronouncements by bishops apply to Catholics regardless of party affiliation. Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark, for one, recently declared that all Catholic officials who promote abortion can "spare the church scandal by opting not to seek communion when they attend mass."

When an individual public figure is publicly criticized (i.e., New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey), it is because he has, in the church's eyes, created scandal by his professions to be a Catholic while dissenting from the church's core teachings.

Yes, most politicians who have been publicly chastised are Democrats. That's because support for abortion is a litmus test for political advancement in that party. Plus, many Democratic Catholic politicians (like Kerry and Kennedy) have moved from being "personally opposed" to radical advocacy of abortion rights.

But Republicans haven't been let off the hook. Tom Ridge, now Homeland Security secretary, was Pennsylvania's governor in 1999 when his Erie County bishop forbade him from speaking on church property due to his pro-abortion views. (To his credit, Ridge admitted the bishop was "stating what a man of the church should state," and said, "I've created my own problem.")

In New York, Gov. Pataki and former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, both professed Catholics, both support abortion and public funding of abortion; Giuliani even backs partial-birth abortion. Rep. Peter King, a pro-life Republican said last week, "If [the bishops] are going to enforce [denying sacraments], they have to do it across the board." King is right.

What of Sen. Kerry's point that "it is not appropriate in the United States for a legislator to legislate your personal belief for the rest of the country"?

That's just plain silly. When acting on legislation, if Kerry doesn't vote his "personal belief," whose beliefs does he vote — Sen. Rick Santorum's? One's philosophical and moral perspective serves as the basis of every judgment — it is inherent to human nature.

Kerry should heed the 1,774 words of that great British legislator, Edmund Burke: "Your representative owes you, not his industry only but his judgment; and he betrays, instead of serving you, if he sacrifices it to your opinion."

Very, very good. Thank you, George Marlin, for writing it. Thank you, New York Post, for printing it.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:34 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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New York Daily News: Low profile for pope book
600,000 for first printing

He's bigger than Bill Clinton ever dreamed, but his publishing plans are far quieter.

When Pope John Paul II's "Rise, Let Us Be on Our Way" is released Sept. 28, he'll do no "60 Minutes" interview or a sitdown with Oprah Winfrey to promote his priestly memoir and reflections on faith.

There'll also be no giant book party at the Metropolitan Museum of Art or sidewalk-jamming author signing at Barnes & Noble.

Time Warner Book Group, which bought from Italian publisher Mondadori the right to bring out "Rise" in North America, plans to advertise the book in Catholic media, in the secular press, including Time and People, and in ethnic papers such as El Diario-La Prensa.

I hope the Pope's book is good. Crossing the Threshold of Hope was excellent. I see that one can't pre-order it on Amazon yet. I'll pass that information along when I get it.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:26 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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The sound of crickets chirping...

Is coming from the various chanceries, having returned from Denver, each bishop needs to make up their mind.

Maybe we'll know before November what they think regarding the denial of Holy Communion to the public advocates of abortion.

At least what I've been writing about, they wrote -- that the political advocacy of abortion is a sin.

Failing to protect the lives of innocent and defenseless members of the human race is to sin against justice. (Catholics in Political Life)

It lacks the punch of Abortion is Murder, but we'll take it.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:59 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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If you want to see a bit of the complexity of web browsers

Have a look at this Mozilla support issue I wrote up earlier.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:17 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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The "Yes, I have a life" excuse.

Some big projects at work, no slack time today. Another graduation, this time my daughter from high school and she was honored to be valedictorian and gave a great speech. I gave her the Peggy Noonan book on giving a speech.

She will be attending State University of New York - Fashion Institute of Technology and working in the Brooklyn Museum over the summer.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:07 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Monday, June 21, 2004
Barron's: Why Kerry May Lose Catholic voters are the key, a top pollster says (paid subs reqd)
Roman Catholics will determine the outcome of the Bush-Kerry presidential contest, says top GOP political analyst John Morgan. And that could be bad news for John Kerry. Morgan's research tells him that Catholics are upset with Kerry for claiming to be one of them but then dismissing church teachings on issues like abortion. "It's liberalization versus orthodoxy," says Morgan. "Never bet against a church."

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:55 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Wall Street Journal: Fund Industry Likely To See More Fallout -ICI Pres Stevens (paid subs reqd)

NEW YORK -- The mutual fund industry is likely to see more scandal-related fallout once the Securities and Exchange Commission passes new rules intended to clean it up, the head of the industry's leading trade group said Monday.

How extensive it will be remains to be seen, however, according to Paul Schott Stevens, who became president of the Investment Company Institute this month.

"I'm a Catholic and my family and I are doing novenas," said Stevens referring to the religious practice of reciting prayers for a special purpose. He was responding during a press conference in New York to a question on whether he thought new rules could result in the ouster of top fund executives.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:48 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Scrappleface: Kerry Feels 'Affinity' for Stem Cells

This paraody is a direct hit on both targets.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:37 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Celebrity Sign of the Cross:

Vivica Fox

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:14 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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The folks who think it's just fine for Kerry to recieve Holy Communion have opinions too. Dissident Voice: Should Sean Hannity Be Denied Communion? by William Hughes
I wonder, how does Bishop Burke feel about politically reactionary Catholics, such as that raving egomaniac, Sean Hannity, the radio, cable and TV windbag for Fox News? Hannity supports the Iraq War. Should he be denied communion? Why stop the censuring at elected politicians? Does being a warmonger and a person who minimized the abuses at Abu Ghraib, bar Hannity from participating in the sacrament of communion? Does Hannity’s lust for U.S. military hegemony around the globe violate any of the Church’s fundamental principles? (As of today’s date, 839 U.S. military personnel have died in Iraq, over 11,300 Iraqis are dead, and their country totally devastated by the invasion and occupation. It has also cost U.S. taxpayers $118 billion dollars to fund this illegal, unjust and immoral conflict.)

What is Bishop Burke’s position on Hannity, who has also written two books hyping the pro-war policies of the Bush-Cheney Gang and espousing a social contract devoid of compassion for the poor? (Check out “Hannity Exposed,” for his latest 15 factual distortions, 06/14/04.) Hannity, a Rupert Murdock-lke clone, poses as a “devout Catholic.” Naturally, he is, like Bishop Burke, an ardent anti-abortionist.

So this passes for peace and justice opinion-writing. Hughes can't be bothered to look-up what Burke has written. As most of my readers know already, the decision to wage war is a matter of prudential judgment to be made by the state informed by the just war teaching of the Church.

Sean isn't a manifest, obstinate sinner. He might have unrepentant moral sin, but I don't know. On the other hand, Kerry's sin is manifest and obstinate without evidence of repentance or even relection.

In any case, Sean is a radio-talk show host and only responsible for his own opinions, he doesn't make policy.

The Homosexual Media: ProudParenting.com

A meeting of America's Roman Catholic bishops that wrapped up late Friday afternoon was unable to reach a national consensus on what penalties should be meted out to politicians who oppose the Church's stand on gay marriage.

While some bishops have called for Roman Catholic politicians who support same-sex marriage to be denied the sacraments of the Church, others prefer a less confrontational approach.

In the end, despite heavy lobbying from both sides, the bishops decided to leave it up to individual dioceses. A closing statement, approved by a 183 - 6 vote said each decision about denying communion to some Catholics in public life should rest with the individual bishop "in accord with established canonical and pastoral principles." The statement also said bishops can legitimately make different judgments on the "most prudent" course of action.

The bishops also said they did not want communion, which Catholics believe is the body and blood of Christ, to be reduced to a political issue.

"The polarizing tendencies of election-year politics can lead to circumstances in which Catholic teaching and sacramental practices can be misused for political ends."

The resolution is bound to frustrate President Bush who last week asked the Pope to put pressure on the American churchmen to be more vocal in their support of a proposed amendment to ban same-sex marriage. Bush reportedly implored the Pope to increase Catholic condemnation of gay marriage in the weeks leading up to the election.

Note that there's no attribution for the quote in the next to last paragraph. Can you guess which side of the debate came up with it?

The last paragraph shows how last week's anonymous rumor regarding Bush's request of the Pope, denied by the participants, just becomes part of the story going forward.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:05 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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From the extremecatholic archive


Senator John F. Kennedy and Jackie Bouvier. She is wearing a veil also known as a mantilla. Such veils were commonly worn by women to Mass prior to Vatican II.

JFK dating Jackie

President and Mrs. Kennedy Original caption:

Kennedy's attend Mass. Newport, R.I.: President and Mrs. Kennedy leave St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church in Newport after attending Mass. Sermon was on the similarities and differences between public and parochial schools. The First Lady wore a white flannel dress, banded in black satin with a black jacket. On her head she wore a black mantilla.

© Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed: September 9, 1962

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:17 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Catholics in Public Life (2)

Bishops, and bishops alone have the power of their office to speak with unique authority not merely to condemn in words but to act. In this case, specifying a consequence for these Catholic politicians who do not repent.

The only consequence of this, I foresee will be a big Shut Up! spoken by these politicians to their lay Catholic critics who will claim that the bishops have given them political cover to declare their conscience in accord with the Catholic Church and thereby receive Holy Communion.

Another failure of the statement is to show that point after which they would have consensus to apply Canon 915. This is like a busy intersection marked with stop signs. People are dying because the stop signs are being ignored. Rather than actively ticket those who are going through without stoping their solution is more stop signs.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:27 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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First thoughts on the Bishops' June 18 2004 statement Catholics in Political Life

This statement leaped out from the screen at me:

Bishops can legitimately make different judgments on the most prudent course of pastoral action. [regarding denial of Holy Communion to some Catholics in political life is necessary because of their public support for abortion on demand.]

This statement makes no sense: they are bishops of one Church, with one Faith, and one Law.

This is like saying that a judge has discretion in accepting a guilty plea.

I think the statement misses the point that it is not the matter of advocacy of abortion in itself but the claim that the advocacy of abortion is in accord with their properly formed consciences.

The examination of conscience that the statement projects as a future event, already has happened in the case of some of these politicians, over 30 years ago.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:20 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Sunday, June 20, 2004
New York Post: Talk of the Town
New York is a city lost in translation.

Almost half of the Big Apple's residents do not speak English as their first language, according to surprising new research...

To really hear New York's increasing linguistic diversity, one need only visit Queens.

In addition to topping out in terms of native Chinese (126,904), Korean (57,447), and Urdu (17,837) speakers, the city's second-largest borough boasts the most Armenian (3,531), Thai (2,794), and Navajo speakers (11).

Perhaps the most significant evidence of linguistic diversity, however, is the fact that English, while still predominant, registers as a majority language in less than half — 28 out of 60 — Queens ZIP codes.

I live in such a ZIP code. Woodside is the vestibule for the rest of America.

Check out U.S. English and English First which are political advocacy organizations for the use of English in the United States.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:53 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Toxic Alert

Spotted this book in Barnes & Noble although Amazon says its publication date is July.

Lots and dialog with quotation marks that could not possibly have been verbatim since the speakers did not give interviews to Breslin. It reminded me of the famous Bob Woodward interviews with CIA director William Casey which happened after Casey was incapable of communicating with anyone. I found few unlikely quotes attributed to Cardinal O'Connor in this book.

I expect the usual suspects will praise this book. For an better researched book on the sexual abuse scandal see Vows of Silence by Jason Berry and Gerald Renner

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 6:50 PM   Permalink   HaloScan

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Reuters: EU Clinches Historic Constitution Deal
EU leaders clinched a landmark deal on a first constitution for Europe Friday, ending months of tortuous negotiation over power-sharing in a bloc that now stretches into formerly communist Eastern Europe.

The leaders gave a standing ovation to Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern, who resurrected negotiations that collapsed last December and steered them to success through Dublin's six-month presidency of the bloc.

But Poland and other Roman Catholic countries failed to secure a reference to Europe's Christian heritage.

But the Vatican will come around and praise the EU and continue to condemn the United States. It's only a matter of days.

posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:13 AM   Permalink   HaloScan

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link to extremeCatholic.blogspot.com