Thursday, June 30, 2016

Links to My Recent Writings Elsewhere

Howdy All!

The times have been a-changin' 'round these parts of late.

(Note to self: stop talking like an extra in a John Wayne film.)

(Start again.)


Sorry I've been away from this space for a time. Allow me to catch you up:

June 1 I started a full-time position as the Director of Religious Education at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church in Mill Valley, CA. I'm in charge of overseeing the faith formation programs for the kindergartners through 9th graders. It's a beautiful and friendly parish, and I'm very excited to be working there! You can find our Facebook page here and our parish blog here.

I've had a few things published/posted/promulgated here and there in the last few months.

Over at Crisis Magazine, I asked, “Are We Still A Nation Of Laws?”, and shared some thoughts “On Converting for the Wrong Reasons.”

My first piece ever at Catholic Lane looked at one possible etymology of the word reconciliation to talk about how we can be “Eyelash to Eyelash with God.”

At Catholic Exchange I tried to give an explanation of the Church's philosophically-based understanding of the Eucharist in “Transubstantation for the Rest of Us.”

The Homiletic and Pastoral Review shared my thoughts on how the Church's art can communicate the truths of the faith in “Worth a Thousand Words: Iconography as Language.”

And Now... An Exciting Announcement!

I'm very pleased to share that my first-ever article will appear in print next month, as the St. Austin Review publishes my piece on how the evangelical counsels of poverty, celibacy, and obedience are present in The Lord of the Rings. Don't worry, I'll be posting a link so you can buy a copy!


  1. Good morning, Nicholas,

    I'm writing this comment here, in response to your article posted today at "Crisis Magazine", entitled, "The Problem with the Unofficial Francis". You posit this question:

    "Is this really what the pope thinks? Is this really what the pope is trying to do?"

    Allow me to quote Pope Bergoglio, known as Francis, from his very first encyclical, "Evangelii Guadium", to allow for your knowing precisely what Bergoglio thinks, from his very immanence, as to be found in the encyclical:

    "I dream of a "missionary option", that is, a missionary impulse capable of transforming everything, so that the Church's customs, ways of doing things, times and schedules, language and structures can be suitably channeled for the evangelization of today's world rather than for her self-preservation...
    More than by fear of going astray, my hope is that we will be moved by the fear of remaining shut up within structures which give us a false sense of security, within rules which make us harsh judges, within habits which make us feel safe..."

    In your article, you quote the miscreant, Walter Cardinal Kasper, as saying this:

    "Cardinal Walter Kasper told a German newspaper recently that Pope Francis doesn’t intend to “preserve everything as it has been” in the Church,..."

    You now CLEARLY see that the malevolent Kasper, filled with rancor and malignity for Holy Mother Church, simply speaks the language of the "Holy" Father, essentially quoting him from "Evangelii Guadium". The Chair of Saint Peter, where rests the Vicar of Christ in this miserable world, is indeed young man, compromised, by an emissary of Lucifer. May Almighty God in His Three Divine Persons, have mercy on me for saying such things and on this Pope and his ilk, for the purpose of their eternal salvation and mine. In caritas.


    1. Dear Mark,

      Thank you for your comments. I don't think your conclusion follows from the evidence you offer. In the quotation you provided, the pope speaks of altering structures within the Church to aid the Church's mission of evangelization. Things like collapsing Vatican dicasteries into new ones or amending canon law would fall into this category. The Church throughout her history has changed its structures, rules of life, and practices to further the divine work of saving souls. He says nothing of attempting to change the teachings of the Church or denying truths of the faith. What in that quotation leads you to conclude that the the pope is an "emissary of Lucifer"?

    2. Good Saturday morning, Nicholas,

      Firstly, what I have written is too long to fit in one field and thus I will post it in two parts. My hope is that you open your eyes to the rhetorical double entendre' that this Pontiff continues to parlay as his extemporaneous "catechesis". He freely chooses to speak on such matters of Church teaching, time and time again, in such a way that he breeds confusion. A signature of his preternatural cunning, is his answering questions with questions, an exquisitely deceptive tool, par excellence, in a fashion beyond that of a maestro. The classic example that all the world now knows of course, "Who am I to judge?". Another is when he spoke to the Lutheran wife of a Catholic man, who proclaimed her faux "yearning" to receive the Blessed and Holy Sacrament with her husband. If she was indeed yearning in truth, she would convert to the One True Faith, outside of which there is no salvation, as extra ecclesia nulla salus teaches dogmatically. So what did the Pontiff do, the chief shepherd of Holy Mother Church as the Church's teaching authority himself, instead of proclaiming the perennial teaching of the General Magisterium to assist in the salvation of the poor woman's eternal soul as we are all commanded to do, yet alone the "Holy" Father (Love your neighbor as I have loved you)? He instilled uncertainty into her mind and all those poorly catechized (the overwhelming majority of today's Ecclesia and of course the world)by suggesting that such an answer was somehow unclear to him and that "the theologians" must answer such "difficult questions". Clearly diabolical from its very essence, Nicholas.


    3. I pray that you are not blind to the confusion that he is willfully instilling both within the Ecclesial Body of Christ and the world writ large. As you are well aware, in the Gospel of Matthew chapter 5, our Blessed Dominus Deus Sabbaoth proclaims: "Let your yes be yes and your no be no. Anything else is from the Evil One.", as He was teaching His disciples. "Anything else" Nicholas, is from the Evil One, particularly from the lips of Peter. No pope proclaims that they're intent is to "dream" of a "missionary option" to "TRANSFORM EVERYTHING", so that the Ecclesial teaching can be "suited for today's world". Not until this pontiff, that is. The Holy Church does not descend into the abyss of this world, rather She is commanded to bring division as Christ Himself proclaimed: "You think that I have come to bring peace. I have come to bring division". The world, as you well know, is under the princely powers of Lucifer and we are tempted also by the world and what it offers the flesh, as well as our concupiscence. He is frankly minimally and exquisitely misleading about what the Church's role in this wretched world is, based on what Her Singular authority is. The Church NEVER, EVER, "transforms everything" and particularly such that She can adapt to "today's world", "RATHER than for Her SELF-PRESERVATION". That, dear Nicholas, is utterly diabolical rhetoric and when you see this from its immanence and you firmly place in your mind the damage that he is inflicting on the human structures, both hierarchical and writ large of the One True Church, the damage is quickly assessed as being incalculable, particularly in this time of utter neo-pagan ideological transformation. Today's Pontiff needs the razor sharp incisiveness and true pastoral care of, God rest his beautiful soul, Pope Leo XIII, and instead our Blessed Dominus Deus, in His Divine Providence, has allowed for a minion of Lucifer to occupy the Chair of Saint Peter, such that more souls will be saved than had been plummeting into eternal hell, as dogmatically understood, in this post-Conciliar epoch of utter confusion as understood in the lived, double entendre' of that maleficence called VCII.

      In your initial critique of what I first wrote to you, you choose to read the words of Francis that I quoted from "Evangelii Guadium" in a light that is blinded from the 3.5 years now of a pontificate of confusion. I pray you revisit your intellective reasoning and divorce yourself of any emotive response that suggests still, after three and one half years of breeding confusion, this pontiff simply and truly in caritas, does NOT deserve, as he is a destroyer of the Ecclesia, not a builder and therefore not a true Shepherd of shepherds, rather a wolf who simply can no longer be understood from an intellective perspective, as wearing sheep's clothing. In caritas.

    4. Dear Sir, I'm afraid you demonstrate a deep misunderstanding of the Catholic faith in several key areas. You use terms in an incorrect or confused manner, both specific theological terms and your vocabulary in general (there is a difference between using big words and using them correctly); you seem to have a heretical understanding of "extra ecclesia nulla salus," along a Feeney-ite line; you deride the pope for allegedly destroying the faith for statements he has made which, while certainly confusing at times, were by no means exercises of the magisterium, and thus were not harmful to the integrity of the faith itself; and in that, you demonstrate an extreme hyper-ultramontanism which places too much credence on every breath and gesture of the Holy Father. In several examples you cite, you take a quotation out of context and willfully give it the worst possible interpretation. This is hardly charitable. I would invite you to read my original article again and consider what I have written there, as well as reading the portions of the Catechism (or Ott's Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, if you prefer) pertaining to the indefectibility of the Church and the infallibility of the pope.

    5. Good afternoon, Nicholas,

      Thus far what you have demonstrated, is your capacity to bring forth the emotive, ad hominem approach to your defense, which it does as it only can, implode under its own weight. If you would like to specifically site my error, I would be happy to address your concerns. As of now, all you have accomplished is an ad hominem use of parlance.

      Pius IX declared ("Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma", Dr. Ludwig Ott, pg. 312): '"By Faith it is to be firmly held that outside the Apostolic Roman Church none can achieve salvation. This is the only ark of salvation. He who does not enter into it, will perish in the flood. Nevertheless equally certainly it is to be held that those who suffer from invincible ignorance of the true religion, are not for this reason guilty in the eyes of the Lord"'. Anyone who is existentially outside the Church, One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic, Nicholas, holds ONLY the subjective possibility of attaining eternal salvation. Only those, who through NO fault of their own (and to the contrary those who, vis a vis committing gravely sinful acts, as objectively understood and by virtue of their free will assent, experience a withdrawal of God's Grace, that which is both freely given and completely underserved by any and all but for the Blessed Virgin and Saint John the Baptist, which then yields them a certain spiritual darkness and by consequence a darkening of the intellect remain culpable)possess an inculpable ignorance (which by nature of the seeds of grace and supernatural virtue infused into the baptized who don't freely reject said grace and supernatural virtue, have no objective platform for being inculpably ignorant)have some subjective possibility of achieving salvation and of course not "because of" their ignorance. We lay faithful and most assuredly the Holy Father, are called to glorify Almighty God in every word we say and in every act we offer. This Pontiff is deliberately confusing his sheep and the children of this world, the unbaptized, time and again for three and one half years now. The examples remain innumerable.

      You have now demonstrated in your last response to me, your utter blindness to the cunning that Bergoglio, as Francis, uses in his willful deception, using what I choose to refer to as "the rhetorical double entendre". He plays on the likes of your utter miscalculation when he invokes his most cherished and chosen modes of communication, those which to any properly catechized Catholic, contain a complete absence of infallibility. Do you for one iota of one instant Nicholas, suggest that most Catholics today, yet alone the unwashed, have any concept or care of whether the Pontiff is in an infallible position when he speaks and writes? His power to deceive rests precisely from within the immanence of this reality that because they (the overwhelming majority of the people in this world) don't (know nor care)and he isn't (speaking nor writing infallibly). That is his cunning. He is playing you like a maestro will play the violin. That said, he is also undermining traditional methods of papal teaching; see Amoris Laetitia as the preeminent example. You are completely missing the mark when you somehow accuse me of falling into "hyper-ultramontanism". That is a rhetorical trap that Francis counts on, as part of his masterful use of deception. Our Blessed Lord and Savior, when he proclaimed: Let your yes be yes and your no, no. Anything else is from the Evil One, is in no understanding speaking of "Peter" in either an ex-Cathedra position nor exclusively in the General Magisterium, as Jesus the Christ commands us to glorify the Father in all we utter and in all we do and Francis is breeding a confusion the likes of which has heretofore not been witnessed in two thousand years of Church history. I pray you wake up Nicholas as you, as all husbands and fathers, are called to lead first, your spouse and family in the Faith. In caritas.

    6. My friend, you misunderstand me. I made no ad hominem attack. I simply pointed out that it was difficult for me to understand what you were saying because of your confused use of terms. Here's the point: we agree that Pope Francis can speak confusingly, and that that is not helpful. But where or how has he attempted to officially change the teachings of the Church? In what am I deceived? He has made public statements that I consider imprudent and confusing, but where has he positively and definitively contradicted Church teaching, saying "this is Catholic belief" when it is not?
      If you could tell me something of your background, I would appreciate it.

    7. Nicholas, (posting in two parts again)

      You are projecting your "confusion" upon my "use of terms". Again, if you point out objective examples of my purported, "confused use", I will be glad to clarify in any capacity that I can. You are indeed invoking the ad hominem when you suggest, without objective example and within the context of your argument of my use of terms, that I am the one who is "confused". You see, the ad hominem is the ad hominem, objectively understood. When you posit a label for my use of terms without objective evidence of why that is in your mind, you are from a de-facto understanding labeling me as somehow "confused" without the objective evidence, which is the ad hominem approach to argument. While I am properly labeling your use of parlance as ad hominem, I am not suggesting any contempt on your part (re:the so called "attack"). I am a Catholic, devoutly, by the Grace of Almighty God, in the pursuit of the One, True Faith and a physician in the practice of internal medicine for 25 years.

    8. Allow me another example of how you are deceived by Francis and his ilk. You ask the question, "...where has he positively and definitively contradicted Church teaching, saying '"this is Catholic belief"' when it is not?" Francis' ilk has come out many times since the so called, "Synod on the Family", to say that no one has done anything to "change" the affirmed teachings of the Church. Again, Nicholas, do you believe for one iota of one moment in time, that those powered by the diabolical are going to show their countenances openly? If they did, they would be proffering the truth and even the poorly catechized would run the other way. Their dialectic is one based in the masterful use of the rhetorical double entendre', which at its foundation, answers questions with more questions. Francis use of his surrogates is itself masterfully placed with the "he said, she said" artful play, for instance. The sign of the quintessential Modernist is his ability to "say without saying" and that is done oft times by answering questions with more exquisitely well placed questions. The artful, yet alone quintessential, Modernist can never be found guilty of manifest heresy, as he places his error insidiously and when accused, denies what he affirms and affirms what he denies, with the cunning of the Serpent. Always know, Nicholas, that we are faced here with the preternatural gifts of the cunning of Lucifer, who as you know lost none of his gifts in the Fall and has an intellective power beyond our capacity to imagine, yet alone know, with the direct Intelligence of the One Who Is Love, as Deus Caritas Est, given him. Further, we know from the inerrant Gospels that Lucifer was given "all of the kingdoms" and he is free to "give them to whom ever I choose". These prelates in the highest positions of Ecclesial power are now his minions, including the one who rests in the Chair of Saint Peter, as this now rests, res ipsa loquitur, time and again for those with eyes to see and ears to hear.

      Lastly, Nicholas, it is in the praxis of the One True Faith, where these vitriolic and malignant usurpers of Truth play their best game. As lex orandi, lex credendi, lex vivendi rests true, it is the failure in belief that led to the change in prayer initially and finally the life lived of the Catholic faithful. Francis and his human minions are artful masters of changing the praxis of the One True Faith without changing the written dogma. It is a changing of lex orandi without manifestly changing the dogmatic aspects of lex credendi, however as it is to be existentially understood, their rancor for the Truth and artful deception, in its final analysis, yields a fundamental disruption in lex vivendi both temporally and eternally, thus. Anabale Bugnini's Mass has led to sacrileges and blasphemies and an ultimate loss in the Supernatural Faith by both clerics and laity, the likes of which could even possibly make him blush. In caritas.

    9. I am sorry that you took it personally when I pointed out your errors. To cite a few specific examples from one entry: Parlay means “a series of bets made in gambling,” or less often, “a meeting of negotiation.” You used it in the sense of “pass of as.”
      Preternatural means “apart from or outside of nature,” as in the preternatural gifts God granted to Adam and Eve apart from their essential human nature, such as infused knowledge and bodily immortality. You refer to Pope Francis’ “preternatural cunning,” which would mean “cunning apart from that which is granted by human nature.” Either you’re saying he has been given extraordinary cunning as a gift from God that he then uses for evil (allegedly), or that Satan has granted him this ability, which would be quite the claim.
      “Answering questions with questions” is not a tool of deception, but of teaching, much as Jesus used (and Socrates before Him). Think, for example, of Matthew 21:24. It’s a didactic tool used to help the student to consider their own presuppositions.
      You take the Pope’s “Who am I to judge?” comment out of context. He said:
      "I see that many times in the Church people search for 'sins from youth,' for example, and then publish them. They are not crimes, right? No, sins. But if a person, whether it be a lay person, a priest or a religious sister, commits a sin and then converts, the Lord forgives, and when the Lord forgives, the Lord forgets and this is very important for our lives," said Pope Francis.
      "When we confess our sins and we truly say, 'I have sinned in this,' the Lord forgets, and so we have no right not to forget, because otherwise we would run the risk of the Lord not forgetting our sins. That is a danger. This is important: a theology of sin. … If someone is gay and is searching for the Lord and has good will, then who am I to judge him?"
      This clearly and obviously means that we ought not to judge someone simply for having a sinful inclination, for all of us are inclined to one or another sin. This phrase was often taken out of context, but when it was spoken, it was perfectly clear.

      Again, my point was not to insult you or to dismiss your argument due to these errors, but merely to say that it was difficult for me to follow what you were saying. With that behind us, I would like to close this discussion (as I don't have further time to engage it, and don't wish it to seem that I'm simply walking away from it) by stating what I believe to be the key difference between us: while we agree that the pope makes public statements that are confusing or imprudent, you believe this is done intentionally as a means to drive people away from the truth and from God, while I do not--I think he simply is not the theologian that his predecessors were. I do not claim to have a view into his heart or his motives, but you do claim that. You say it is clear by his actions, but I do not see it. You say I am being deceived, but I do not think so. I'm not sure how this discussion can proceed then. I thank you for taking the time to engage this discussion with me, though. Deus benedicat te.

    10. Good evening, Nicholas, (posted in parts)

      I too then, will close with this final commentary. My use of the term "parlay" is of a less common colloquial understanding than what you suggest, as follows: "to exploit successfully or to increase or otherwise transform into something of much greater value" (Merriam Webster). Thus, your opinion about my linguistic use of the word, "parlay", as being my "error" in this case, was simply your error in the mischaracterization of my language use of the transitive verb, parlay. Secondly, your apology was unnecessary as I took "nothing personally" nor was I "insulted" by what you objectively accomplished, as I have no interest in human respect for the sake of the formality of human respect. My only interest is in "The Truth" and the truth. Continuing on, my use of the term, "preternatural", is indeed referring to the angelic realm, as Satan indeed revealed in the temptation of Jesus the Christ in the desert that he is in possession of all of the "kingdoms" of this world and he is free to give them to whomever he chooses, as I alluded to in my previous discussion. You are simply blind to what Francis is accomplishing from within the very interiority of the rhetorical construction that he continues to parlay flawlessly, Nicholas, as that is now patently clear from your argument.


    11. Take a step back for a moment, Nicholas, and consider the unmitigated, purported "gaffs" that Francis has made, very interestingly oft times on return trips from visiting nation state sovereigns on the papal aircraft, which the Vatican has total control over and as thus could simply not allow for the press to query him there, as the now infamous, "who am I to judge?", comment was made. Don't you believe a pontiff, who you intone to be so incredibly ignorant of the teachings of the One True Faith and of the Aristotelian-Thomistic philosophical method of inquiry, that he would in caritas keep his mouth shut but for pre-authored language for the sake of not causing further scandal to countless souls with his rhetoric? Your view of this pontiff as being a somehow lesser theologian than his predecessors speaks to the blindness that you indeed have in regard to just what Francis is accomplishing. You write him off as being somehow of a lesser intellect, while at once as I opined before, he is playing you as a maestro plays the violin. It is truly sophomoric to believe that the cadre of prelates that surround the Pontiff (Lombardi?) would continue to allow him to "misstep" time and time again, extemporaneously, as though his innumerable repetitions of error somehow beget the truth. Yet this is what he is doing and this is what Lombardi (Gerhard Mueller), et al, continue to "allow" him to do. This is the signature of the Hegelian dialectic of synthesis existentially manifest right before our very eyes, re: being somehow begets "non-being", which then somehow begets becoming, and this carries a Luciferian signature, not the signature of a Holy Roman Pontiff and his handlers, submitting themselves into the Will of Almighty God. See too "missteps" as you might categorize them Nicholas, here-- "beg forgiveness” and here--"pretends to be angry". This is an exquisitely calculated maleficence of the teaching authority of the One True Faith.

    12. Lastly, I wish to address your accusation that I have "taken out of context" the words of Francis in the now infamous, "who am I to judge?". Allow me to quote you, as you quoted Francis:

      "If someone is gay and is searching for the Lord and has good will, then who am I to judge him?"

      You indeed sum up the intent of Francis within this statement of his as follows: "This clearly and obviously means that we ought not to judge someone simply for having a sinful inclination, for all of us are inclined to one or another sin."

      Lets now look into Francis' comment critically. Firstly, he intones that a human person "is gay". That is patently erroneous as we human persons are created in the Divine likeness and image of God. I'll spare you the metaphysical discussion of the human person but suffice it to say that we are "not gay" as the homosexual act is contrary to human nature, properly understood and the human person is not "the act" as Francis intones there. He then speaks of a person "searching for the Lord". An interesting linguistic use in the same context of his stating firstly that a person, "is gay". Find the National Catholic Register article here: What indeed does supposed "searching for the Lord" have to do with making a free will assent into the intrinsically evil and as thus mortally sinful act of sodomy? This is a willful conflation of language that suggests because someone is "searching for the Lord", all else is well in whatever they are doing, including sodomy in this specific context. Our Blessed Lord commanded the adulterous woman at the well to "go and sin no more", not to continue in her mortal sin as she was in her "search" for him. Further, He commanded that not everyone that says, "Lord, Lord" will enter the Kingdom of God. The teachings of our Blessed Lord are quite pristinely clear and simple, Nicholas, not requiring a fundamental grasp of Thomistic metaphysics to know. Indeed, Francis is also exquisitely misleading when he suggests that he will not "judge him", when he is commanded, as are we all, by our Blessed Lord to judge the willful acts, not the heart of the person, as Francis intones in his language use. Finally, Francis injects the "good will" of the person, whatever that means in this context as he says precious nothing else about it. The person can have all the "good will" in the world, as the road to hell is paved in "good intentions(will)". Many souls there are in eternal hell who had supposed "good will". In caritas.