Sunday, October 31, 2010


Feast of Christ the King

The foundation of liberty is truth (i.e. what is in accord with objective reality), not dignity. Because whoever clings to error loses his dignity.

But what of intrinsic human dignity?

There is no such thing. Man's dignity is always contingent -- it depends on the extent of his adherence to what is true. To the degree that a man is ignorant or wrong, his dignity suffers.

To put it in a positive manner, man derives his dignity from perfection -- i.e. from his knowledge of the truth and acquisition of the good.

Seen in this light, the notion that "everyone has his own truth" is nonsensical -- it is a concept that sacrifices truth for the sake of some short-term goal.

Error brings bondage and misery. The truth sets you free.

- Excerpted from Religious Liberty in Open Letter to Confused Catholics by Abp. Marcel Lefebvre

Thursday, October 28, 2010

How to Keep Your Grout Clean

I travel quite a bit with work -- one more flight this year and I hit my medallion status with Delta (I would have reached that milestone much sooner but I flew a good bit of AirTran this year too). So it's nice to have a respite from travel and enjoy the comforts of home.

Case in point: I'm having company over tonight. Neighbor Olivia was by beforehand to drop off some appetizers. Surveying my kitchen, she asked, "Sean, how do you keep the grout in your tiles so clean?"

"Because I never use my kitchen," I said.

See, depending on your situation, some things are just easy to solve for.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Who is Correct?

Q: Catholics profess that the bread and wine actually become the Body and Blood of Christ during the Consecration. Protestants, meanwhile, hold that the bread and wine used in communion are just symbols, and that the in the communion service nothing actually happens. Who is correct?

A: Both sides are correct.

Q: How can both sides be correct?

A: When a Catholic Priest says the words of Consecration at Mass, the bread and wine literally (and not symbolically) become the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Christ. When a protestant pastor performs a communion service, meanwhile, nothing happens.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Juan, Tim, and Bombs


Said former NPR news analyst Juan Williams: "Christians shouldn't be blamed for Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh."

That's good, because McVeigh was an agnostic who said science was his religion.

In fact, in his philosophy of religion, McVeigh had more in common with NPR news analysts than with Christians.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Real Adventure

Bp. Bernard Fellay, SSPX: "When we ask priests who approach the Society what they expect from us, they tell us initially that they expect doctrine." With respect to the young generation devoted to Tradition, His Excellency said, "it is waiting, ready for the adventure of Tradition, sensing very well that what is being offered to it apart from Tradition is nothing but imitation goods."

"The act of defending any of the cardinal virtues has today all the exhilaration of a vice." - G.K Chesterton in A Defense of Humilities, The Defendant, 1901

Video: excerpt of Bp. Fellay celebrating a Pontifical High Mass in Kansas City -- October 17, 2010

I'm seated (off camera) Gospel-side, about a dozen rows back with Helmut and Linda.

Friday, October 15, 2010

40 Years of SSPX

I'm in Kansas City this weekend attending the 40th anniversary conference of the SSPX.

One celebrates birthdays because it is good to be alive; similarly, one celebrates anniversaries to commemorate a happy event -- in this case, the foundation of the Society of St. Pius X. This ex-atheist now entertains a good hope of Heaven, and the SSPX is the entity used by Almighty God to bring that change about. In gratitude, then, for the graces brought through the Society, I'm attending the conference. In a world that wants to see the Gospel silence and the Faith given by Jesus Christ to the world through his Apostles, I'm glad to support this public manifestation of the light shining in darkness; to be edified by the examples and company of the holy people present; to be renewed in my efforts to fight the good fight.

Merci, monsignor.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ways to Say Thank You

Anand is an Indian chap I've been working with on my current assignment. He's an affable fellow, and he has kindly entertained several of my questions about life and language in India (e.g. I related this story, and he agreed that it was prudent of me to not have had dinner with the fellow).

"How do you say 'thank you' in Hindi?" I asked him the other day.

"Dhayanwad" he said (I transliterate). "But we do not use this."

"What?" I replied. "You mean if someone does you a good turn you just ignore him without acknowledging it?"

"No," Anand said, smiling. "We just say 'thank you' in English, we do not say it in Hindi."

It's the legacy of the Britishers, you see. Live and learn.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Combo Special

Last night's dinner was Chinese buffet with Dave by Northlake Mall. I can't say I quite grasp the point of the take out special, but I figure maybe it comes across better in the original Chinese.

Last Night's Combo Special

Friday, October 8, 2010

Another Free Lunch

Last Friday I got a free lunch after the waitress spilled a glass of beer on me.

Today I got a free lunch because my manicotti took too long to be served. No food or beverages were spilled in the process.

Next Friday I'm on multiple airplanes; we'll see how the food turns out then.

Thursday, October 7, 2010


Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary

Excerpted from Butler's Lives of the Saints:

The Rosary is a series of prayers through which Catholics honor Christ by meditating on 15 principal mysteries or events from His life and that of His mother. While contemplating each mystery, one begins with an Our Father, follows with ten Hail Marys, and concludes with one Glory Be.

This devotion is an epitome of the Gospel -- a history of the life, sufferings, and triumphant victory of Jesus Christ and an exposition of what He did for our salvation when He walked the earth. The topics of the meditations are as follows.

Joyful Mysteries
(1) The Annunciation of the Archangel Gabriel to the Blessed Virgin Mary
(2) The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary to her cousin St. Elizabeth
(3) The Nativity of Christ in Bethlehem
(4) The Presentation of the Holy Infant at the temple in Jerusalem
(5) The Finding in the Temple of the young Jesus teaching

Sorrowful Mysteries
(1) Christ's Agony in the Garden on the night of His betrayal
(2) The Scourging at the Pillar
(3) The Crowning with Thorns
(4) The Bearing of the Cross
(5) The Crucifixion

Glorious Mysteries
(1) The Resurrection of Christ from the dead
(2) His Ascension into Heaven
(3) The Descent of the Holy Ghost on the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Apostles at Pentecost
(4) The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven at the end of her earthly life
(5) The Coronation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth

The three prayers used have their own significance.
* The Our Father is the perfect prayer given by Christ directly to His Apostles.
* The Hail Mary does honor to the Incarnation.
* The Glory Be declares the Divinely revealed truth of the Holy Trinity.

The principal objectives of the devotion are:
* to bear in mind these mysteries,
* to return to God an homage of love, praise, and thanksgiving for them,
* to implore His mercy through them,
* to make them the subject of meditation, and
* to mould one's affections, regulate his life, and form his spirit by the impressions they make on his soul.

The Rosary is a simple prayer to recite and can be performed by anyone regardless of age or ability. It is also sublime and faithful in the exercise of all the highest acts of prayer, contemplation, and interior virtues.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Pope in the UK

Source: DICI

During his four-day visit to the United Kingdom (September 16-19), the statements made by Benedict XVI dealt more particularly with four topics:
the pedophile priest scandal;
the role of Catholics in a strongly secularized society (with a reminder about the mission of the bishops);
ecumenical dialogue with the Anglicans;
the example given by Cardinal John Henry Newman, whom he was anxious to beatify personally.

The modernist crisis of the past 50 years in the Church has pretty much been the result of an unprecedented, monumental failure on the part of the bishops and the priests to adhere to the constant practice and belief of the Catholic Church.

Take the pedophile priest scandal: in the good old days, if a pedophile priest were not lynched by a mob, his bishop would remove him from office (so that he could not do further harm) and would place him in a remote monastery where he would justly live out his life in penance. But in these days of the New Advent, the bishops instead surrendered their judgment to "compassionate" counselors and clinicians who declared such men healed and delivered of their maladies and safe to return to normal parish work. The bishops rubber-stamped such declarations, priests were transferred and reinstated, and the cycle of abuse continued. Compassion for the victims consistently took a back seat to all this. Meanwhile anathemas from the bishops were reserved only for Catholics who wanted to stay faithful to the worship and dogmas that produced 20 centuries of saints. There's a very hot place in Hell reserved for clerics guilty of such injustices.

Ah, for the good old days.

Tradidi quod et accepi.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

The 5s of October

This October has
* five Fridays
* five Saturdays
* five Sundays
all in one month.

The phenomenon occurs only once every 823 years.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Today's Free Lunch

At today's lunch, the waitress spilled a glass of beer down my back. Yes it was an accident. Yes my lunch was free.