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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Feet Washing, Weapons of "Love" & More Interfaith Apostasy

Feet Washing, Weapons of "Love" & More Interfaith Apostasy
Here is the latest vomit coming from the Modernists of Vatican II. Please pray for conversions
Francis and Catholic do not go in the same sentence...

CASTELNUOVO DI PORTO, Italy -- Pope Francis washed and kissed the feet of Muslim, Orthodox, Hindu and Catholic refugees Thursday, declaring them children of the same God, in a gesture of welcome and brotherhood at a time when anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant sentiment has spiked following the Brussels attacks.

Francis denounced the carnage as a "gesture of war" carried out by blood-thirsty people beholden to the weapons industry during an Easter Week Mass with asylum-seekers at the shelter in Castelnuovo di Porto, outside Rome.
The Holy Thursday rite re-enacts the foot-washing ritual Jesus performed on his apostles before being crucified, and is meant as a gesture of service. Francis contrasted that gesture with the "gesture of destruction" carried out by the Brussels attackers, saying they wanted to destroy the brotherhood of humanity represented by the migrants.
"We have different cultures and religions, but we are brothers and we want to live in peace," Francis said in his homily, delivered off-the-cuff in the windy courtyard of the center.
Several of the migrants then wept as Francis knelt before them, poured holy water from a brass pitcher over their feet, wiped them clean and kissed them.
Francis was greeted with a banner reading "Welcome" in a variety of languages as he walked down a makeshift aisle to celebrate the outdoor Mass. But only a fraction of the 892 asylum-seekers living at the shelter attended, and many of the seats were left empty. Those who came out, though, received a personal greeting: At the end of the Mass, Francis greeted each refugee, one by one, posing for selfies and accepting notes as he moved down the rows.
Vatican rules had long called for only men to participate in the ritual, and past popes and many priests traditionally performed it on 12 Catholic men, recalling Jesus' 12 apostles and further cementing the doctrine of an all-male priesthood.
Francis shocked many Catholics (it is not possible to shock real Catholics at this point) within weeks of his 2013 election by performing the ritual on women and Muslims at a juvenile detention center. After years of violating the rules outright, Francis in January changed the regulations to explicitly allow women and girls to participate.
The Vatican said Thursday that four women and eight men took part. The women included an Italian Catholic who works at the center and three Eritrean Coptic Christian migrants. The men included four Catholics from Nigeria, three Muslims from Mali, Syria and Pakistan and a Hindu man from India.
The Vatican's new norms said anyone from the "people of God" could be chosen to participate in the ceremony. While the phrase "people of God" usually refers to baptized Christians, the decree also said that pastors should instruct "both the chosen faithful and others so that they may participate in the rite consciously, actively and fruitfully," suggesting that the rite could be open to non-Catholics as well.
Francis seemed to define "people of God" as open-ended.
"All of us, together: Muslims, Hindi, Catholics, Copts, Evangelicals. But brothers, children of the same God," he said. "We want to live in peace, integrated."

Related: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/03/24/pope-to-wash-feet-muslim-orthodox-hindu-migrants.html

UHHHH...Can you say Masonry?  Vatican II New Church in action. 

Beginning Triduum, Francis tells priests: God is mercy, not 'complicated theology'

This morning the Pope presided over a solemn Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica for the celebration of Holy Thursday
 Pope Francis began the global Catholic church’s celebration of the days leading to Easter with a call Thursday for people to “break out of our set ways” to be more merciful towards others and telling priests they have sometimes become blind to God’s will “because of an excess of complicated theology.”

 In a solemn Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica for the celebration of Holy Thursday, the Pontiff said Jesus had fought not for his own glory but to break down walls “to open the flood gates of mercy … that he wants to pour out upon our world.”

 “The mercy of our God is infinite and indescribable,” said the Pope. “The Lord prefers something to be wasted rather than one drop of mercy be held back.”

 God, said Francis, “would rather have many seeds be carried off by the birds of the air than have one seed be missing, since each of those seeds has the capacity to bear abundant fruit -- thirtyfold, sixtyfold, even a hundredfold.”

 Speaking directly to thousands of priests in attendance for the liturgy, the Pontiff later said that Jesus had called for ministers “who are poor, hungry, prisoners of war, without a future, cast to one side and rejected.”

“As priests, we identify with people who are excluded, people the Lord saves,” said the Pope. “We remind ourselves that there are countless masses of people who are poor, uneducated, prisoners, who find themselves in such situations because others oppress them.”

 Francis then encouraged priests to remember “the extent to which we too are often blind, lacking the radiant light of faith, not because we do not have the Gospel close at hand, but because of an excess of complicated theology.”

 “We feel that our soul thirsts for spirituality -- not for a lack of Living Water which we only sip from -- but because of an excess of ‘bubbly’ spirituality, a ‘light’ spirituality,” he said.

 The Pontiff was speaking Thursday in a homily for the Vatican’s Chrism Mass, an annual celebration held on Holy Thursday during which the pope blesses the sacramental oils to be used throughout the following liturgical year.

 The celebration is usually attended by many priests, as during the Mass the Pope also leads the ministers present in making a renewal of their priestly promises.

 Holy Thursday is the day celebrated by Christians around the world to mark when Jesus had his last supper. It begins the three days leading to Easter Sunday, known as the Paschal Triduum.

 Francis will continue the celebration of the day later in the afternoon by heading to a center for refugees outside Rome, where he will symbolically wash the feet of male and female refugees in the example of Jesus, who is said to have washed the feet of his disciples.

 In one of the only liturgical changes made so far during his three year pontificate, the Pope last January changed Catholic church law to allow priests to wash the feet of both women and men during such ceremonies, held in churches around the world on Holy Thursday.

 During his homily Thursday morning, the pope again stressed his frequent emphasis on the nature of God’s mercy. He said that people should look to God’s example and “should not hesitate in showing excess” mercy towards others.

 The Pontiff said that after God grants someone forgiveness through God’s mercy they are immediately restored to their full dignity.

 “God does not only forgive incalculable debts … he also enables us to move directly from the most shameful disgrace to the highest dignity without any intermediary stages,” said Francis.

 In his words directly to priests, the Pontiff said they sometimes also feel trapped “by a digital, virtual worldliness that is opened and closed by a simple click.”

 “We are oppressed not by threats and pressures like so many poor people, but by the allure of a thousand commercial advertisements which we cannot shrug off to walk ahead, freely, along paths that lead us to love of our brothers and sisters, to the Lord’s flock, to the sheep who wait for the voice of their shepherds,” he said.

 Francis ended the homily by mentioning his ongoing Jubilee year of mercy, asking that God will “let us commit ourselves anew to bringing God’s mercy to all men and women, and performing those works which the Spirit inspires in each of us for the common good of the entire faithful People of God.”

 Later on Thursday afternoon, the Pontiff will head to the refugee center about 16 miles north of Rome to celebrate the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper with some 892 migrants who have requested asylum in Europe.

 Once there, the Pope will wash the feet of eight men and four women, the Vatican said. Five of the people are expected to be Catholic; three Orthodox Christian; three Muslim; and one a Hindu.

 The refugee center, which has been in operation since 2007 and helps refugees from 25 different countries, said that Francis’ visit “calls us to a renewed commitment to help migrants.”
Gods Justice is coming...

A-list celebrities line up to meet the "Pope"!!

Under Pope Francis, the Vatican has a more open door policy than ever before, inspiring love from politicians, rock stars, and famous actors, regardless of their personal religious beliefs.

L’Osservatore Romano | Corbis
Nicolas Sarkozy, former president of France, and his wife, Carla Bruni Sarkozy, met with Pope Francis this past weekend. And while the pontiff and the politician probably talked about spiritual matters, there may have been other agendas in play, as well.
Sarkozy, who was voted out of office in 2012, again leads the Union for a Popular Movement party and may run to reclaim the French presidency in 2017. A Catholic, Sarkozy has long politically courted fellow believers—though some Catholics have decried his less-than-pious personal life. He’s been divorced twice, and his marriage to Carla Bruni, a former model, has raised eyebrows as well, given her history of titillating work, including sometimes posing in the nude. Indeed, when Sarkozy scheduled a meeting with Pope Benedict XVI in 2010 (perhaps, some speculated, in an effort to shore up his poll numbers with French Catholics), papal officials sent the French ambassador a message saying, “Carla Sarkozy is not welcome in the Vatican.”
No such message was sent this time around. Pope Francis has fostered a more open, genial image than his predecessor, and the change in tone has resonated with Catholics and non-Catholics alike. The current Pope has become, for better or worse, a pop star in his own right—and as such, perhaps it’s not too surprising that politicians and celebrities alike are clamoring for a meeting, a blessing or even a wave from the pontiff.
But why do they want to meet with the Pope? The reasons can be as complex as the people themselves.
Some celebs, naturally, are looking for an opportunity to talk with the Pope about issues or causes of particular interest to them. This is particularly true of visiting world leaders (or would-be leaders like Sarkozy), of course, who treat the pontiff as they might with any head of state. But it extends to denizens of Hollywood as well—many of whom are involved with their own special, charitable projects. An audience with the Pope may help boost the profiles of these charities, lending them greater moral authority and generating, perhaps additional publicity.
Legendary rocker Bono made plenty of headlines when he met with Pope John Paul II in 1999 in an effort to ask wealthy countries to cancel the debt of third-world nations. He famously gave the Pope his trademark sunglasses to try on. Sometimes, a papal audience may even boost the profile of a faith-friendly movie: Angelina Jolie was invited to the Vatican to screen her film Unbroken (about the amazing odyssey of Louis Zamperini, which she directed) in 2015.
Others are deeply faithful Catholics themselves. To meet the Church’s spiritual leader is a big deal, no matter how many Bentleys they might own.
But still others are drawn to the man for reasons that, perhaps, they themselves would struggle to explain. This seems particularly true in the Pope Francis era. His personal warmth and obvious passion for human rights has left many stars starstruck themselves. Kerry Washington, lead for ABC’s hit show Scandal, braved the crowds like everyone else when Pope Francis came to visit the United States in 2015, posting a blurry photo of Francis’ drive down a Washington D.C. street. She, like so many others, simply wanted to see the man. “Pope Francis might be my celebrity crush,” she tweeted, adding the hashtag “#ImNotEvenCatholic.”
She’s not the only one who has praised the Pope despite religious differences. Everyone from Jane Fonda to Elton John have offered their accolades. “I might be crazy but I got this weird feeling that the new Pope might be the greatest man alive,” comedian Chris Rock tweeted shortly after Francis was named the Church’s 266th pope. Jewish Jon Stewart, the much-beloved former anchor for Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, even quipped of Francis, “OK, that’s it. I’m converting.”
Whatever motivates someone to meet the Pope, perhaps the real reasons can run far deeper than they even realize. They may want his opinion on an important matter or his blessing for a charitable endeavor. But there’s a spiritual hunger in all of us, even if we only dimly feel it or try to ignore it. There’s a desire to touch the transcendent—to know God, and for God to know us. Perhaps for some, there’s more in play in a papal audience than simply garnering publicity or even meeting an admirable man: through the Pope, perhaps they begin to see a hint of the God he worships—and their lives may be forever changed.
Here are some celebrities who’ve rubbed elbows with the Pope—even if from a distance.

Angelina Jolie

L’Osservatore Romano | Corbis
She met with the Pope during her Vatican screening of Unbroken—the story of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner who, after his B-24 crashed into the ocean during World War II, survived 47 days adrift and several years in a Japanese prison camp. He later became a Christian evangelist. “To be invited to screen Unbroken at The Vatican is an honor and a tribute to Louie’s legacy as a man of faith and someone who exemplified the power of forgiveness and the strength of the human spirit,” Jolie later said.

Russell Crowe

The Australian actor who won an Oscar for Gladiator asked the Vatican in 2014 whether he might be able to meet the Pope and screen for him his newest movie, Noah. The Vatican declined a private meeting, but it did allow him and others “back stage” to meet with Pope Francis briefly in a more public setting.

Lionel Messi

Claudio Villa | Getty Images
One of the world’s biggest soccer stars was invited, along with other players from the national teams from Argentina and Italy, to meet with Pope Francis at the Vatican. There, the pontiff encouraged them to remember their responsibilities as role models. “You footballers are popular and people follow you,” Pope Francis said. “You have a social responsibility. More than being champions, you are men; carriers of humanity.”

Mark Wahlberg

Carl Court | Getty Images
When Pope Francis was visiting Philadelphia for the World Meeting of Families, the Catholic actor MC’ed the ceremony—and turned to the Pope for a special dispensation. “Holy Father, please forgive me,” he told the pontiff. “I’ve always hoped that the good Lord has a sense of humor when it comes and pertains to many of the movies that I’ve made.”

Oprah Winfrey

The talk show host/media mogul has been invited, along with a number of other prominent Hollywood luminaries, to a special entertainment summit, of sorts, at the Vatican—an effort to improve the Church’s image in Western media. That powwow has yet to take place, but Oprah seems to be a fan of Francis. “I hold your life and work in the highest esteem,” she said as part of a Catholic Charities welcome to the Pope when he came to the United States in 2015.

Joseph Fiennes

L’Osservatore Romano | Pool Photo | AP
While in Rome to promote his new movie Risen, Fiennes, his wife and two daughters met the Pope after the General Audience. “You are incredible,” the actor told him.

Eva Longoria

The actress perhaps best known for her work in Desperate Housewives traveled to Washington D.C. with her sister, Liza, to see the Pope speak in 2015. She told her followers on Twitter, “A yr ago I asked my sister Liza ‘who do you most want to meet in the world?’ She said ‘the Pope’. And here we are! #PopeFrancis #Blessed #DC”.

Tim Cook

L’Osservatore Romano | Pool Photo | AP
The head of Apple, the largest company in the world, met with Pope Francis for 15 minutes for World Day of Social Communications. Though Francis admits that he’s a “dinosaur” when it comes to technology, he’d like the Internet to be a source for good in the world. “The Internet can be used wisely to build a society which is healthy and open to sharing,” Pope Francis said.

Leonardo DiCaprio

L’Osservatore Romano | Corbis
The Oscar-winning actor of The Revenant met with Pope Francis earlier this year, greeting him in Italian. He gave the pontiff a check for the Church to use on environmental causes, as well as a book filled with paintings by 15th century painter Hieronymus Bosch. The Pope gave the actor what some would find an unusual request. “And pray for me,” Francis said. “Don’t forget.” “I will,” DiCaprio said. “Thank you.”

Turkson: Environmentalist Puppet

Progress is not always a good thing, says cardinal 

  • March 23, 2016
TORONTO - We have the technology to extend life beyond its natural limits, so why not apply our technological resources to end a life when natural death eludes us? Why not take full responsibility for the control humans already exercise over life?
For an African Christian, or any sort of Christian really, the idea that humans should engineer the end of life — or its beginning — is dangerous thinking, Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana told The Catholic Register
Turkson was in Toronto March 21 to deliver the 2016 John M. Kelly Lecture at St. Basil’s Church on the campus of the University of St. Michael’s College. The president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace used his lecture to promote Pope Francis’ 2015 encyclical Laudato Si’ by questioning our definition of progress.
“We cannot live as a human society in our interconnectedness, in our interdependence, if we are not able to support and uphold one another,” Turkson said.
Whenever people decide to take charge over the end of life they act as individuals outside of society and without regard to the common good. To elevate individual will above every other consideration, making individual autonomy the only consideration, breaks the common bond of humanity. In the Catholic view and in the African view, humanity and human dignity are common property which all people share as human beings.
“The thing about assisted suicide or euthanasia or whatever you call it, how does it make for the due recognition of the dignity and the character of human life?” Turkson asked.
“No individual is an island,” he told his audience. “This is true in every aspect and phase of human life. Relationship is fundamental to being human. End-of-life provisions must not neglect this point.”
It’s not as if the Catholic Church runs away from the struggle, pain and suffering that can accompany death. Nor does the Church promote some sort of ideology of suffering, Turkson said. Palliative sedation and other forms of pain management which may hasten death but whose purpose is to keep patients comfortable and at peace are more than acceptable. But deciding that some forms of human life, some kinds of disability, make human lives disposable, used-up and undignified subtracts from the value and dignity of all human life.
“Compassion is misplaced when it intentionally hastens death, in fact, it discards. It is the ultimate form of exclusion, marginalization and throwing away,” said Turkson.
Laudato Si’ is about much more than just the environment or climate change, Turkson said. Pope Francis is attempting to reframe our thinking about progress, culture, technology and economics by asking how human beings should live together on a planet with limited resources.
We are on the brink. We are on the precipice. It’s almost like suicide now,” he said.
Catholic social teaching, which elevates the common good over individualism, is not an attempt to limit freedom or stifle liberty.
“We don’t force anything. This is offered,” Turkson said.
In the 21st century, accepting the Church’s offering of social teaching means reconsidering our understanding of progress, he said. When progress is thought of exclusively in terms of another point of GDP growth or the bit technology on the market it limits our ability to think about how communities advance collectively to build a better society, he said.
“Yes, there is the material side of a person. But there’s also the spiritual side.”
The spiritual isn’t necessarily confined to monasteries, monks and meditation. It relies on a culture that values human flourishing — that elevates the ways in which we collectively provide for everyone, including the poor, the marginal, the disabled and the heartbroken, to discover the possibilities of human life.
“Access to education, access to health care, access to information, these are ultimately what determines how well people live,” said Turkson.
Education is pointless in a culture that does not value knowledge. Health care is meaningless in a society that does not guard public health. Elevating the individual at the expense of our collective good can only undercut our freedom in the long run, Turkson argues.
Catholic social teaching, on the other hand, is all about the common good.
“The common good for us as a Church is the ultimate objective and aim of any decent human progress,” Turkson said. “That all of us be enabled to experience the flourishing that belongs to all human beings allows the corresponding development of the dignity of every human being.”
The Church isn’t against economic progress or advances in technology. It only argues these must serve a purpose.
“A technocratic mentality has come to dominate all aspects of life,” said Turkson. “It reduces all of reality to objects that can be manipulated limitlessly... This technocratic paradigm is the conviction that all reality, including human life, can be reduced to objects which people can endlessly manipulate for the sake of profit and without the slightest ethical consideration.”
The issues of human trafficking and modern slavery which women’s religious orders have highlighted over recent decades are a key area for Catholic social thought, said Turkson. Greed is not good and the global traffic in women for sex and men and children for the anonymous labour on the underside of the global economy only shows how the paradigm of profit can lead us away from progress.
“When one man is trying to step on another man’s head and neck, it’s always the gain. People think there’s gain to be made and then they are ready to do all of that,” Turkson said. “The fraternity of humanity would have us recognize and accept and affirm the dignity of each person, dignity which may not be compromised and reduced in any way by lifestyles such as enslavement or prostitution or any of those forms. There’s a big challenge there.”

Compassion for refugees reflected in annual Palm Sunday march


By Caroline Smith

Around 1,000 people from varied faith and social justice backgrounds gathered for the Palm Sunday Walk for Justice for Refugees on 20 March, with a strong Catholic contingent reflecting on the need to show compassion to people seeking asylum.
The event began at  St George’s Cathedral in central Perth, where attendees listened to a number of speakers, including paediatrician, Dr Gervase Chaney; law student and former refugee, Rahila Haidari; Sri Lankan poet and former refugee, Ravi; Students for Refugees representative, Michelle Bui; and Archdiocese of Perth Catholic priest, Father Greg Donovan.
Fr Greg spoke of his experience providing accommodation to five Iranian asylum seekers at his Kalamunda parish, and the importance of getting to know these people and their stories.
“I have been enriched so much by learning their names, hearing their stories, hearing their frustrations, their joy when they receive Protection Visas,” he said.
He added that one of the five asylum seekers had not received a Protection Visa, and was severely affected by this, having no access to work or Medicare support, although some doctors had provided medical and mental health support pro bono.
Director of the Archdiocesan Justice Ecology and Development Office, Carol Mitchell, said that compassion for refugees was an important focus for the Church since the release of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s Social Justice Statement in September last year.
She said the statement – which covers 2015 and 2016 – was inspired in part by Pope Francis’ response to the drowning of asylum seekers at Lampedusa near Sicily three years ago.
“The Social Justice Statement says ‘For Pope Francis, the boats were a symptom of a wider lack of justice and compassion in national and international life. The problem was not primarily one of people smugglers or of protecting borders. It was a problem of not valuing people properly’,” Ms Mitchell said.
“The Australian Catholic Bishops’ Conference, through the Statement, reminds us of our global and personal call to action – by responding to the call of Jesus.
“Pope Francis reminds us that the presence of Christ transforms the darkness of human despair into the light of hope.”
Ms Mitchell said Archbishop Timothy Costelloe had reinforced this message by urging a ‘better way’ of responding to asylum seekers, instead of the government’s current policy of offshore detention.
“In August 2014, His Grace, Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB, demonstrated great leadership by publicly speaking in support of a ‘better way’ to the harsh regime of immigration detention centres for asylum seekers,” she said.
“With other Christian faith leaders, an impassioned statement was made for families to be taken out of detention given the harsh realities and the lack of care being shown to mothers, babies and infants.”
As well as encouraging mercy towards people seeking asylum, the Social Justice Statement also focused on national discussion of the issue, noting a contradiction between the welcome suggested in our national anthem, and the language used towards asylum seekers by media and government.
“The Statement calls for a new global response of compassion,” she said.
“Our Catholic Social Teaching reminds us that we are all created in the image of God and are therefore endowed with dignity – but this carries with it certain rights and responsibilities.
“This includes recognising that the rights of individuals must be balanced with the wider common good.”

YAY! "Social Justice for Everyone!" 

Gotta Have Some Masonic/Marxist "Equality"

The Catholic Church puts one foot forward on the path to including women

Who wants a foot washing? Anybody else? Homos? Pedophiles?

In her 50th Easter season as a nun, Sister Antonia Sanchez participated in something new.
For the past 49 years, since she joined the order of Religious Mary Immaculate at age 16, Sanchez has watched priests wash the feet of men on Holy Thursday. This week, Sanchez was before the altar herself at the nation’s preeminent Catholic shrine. She was the one removing her shoes and socks. And then the pope’s representative to America washed her feet.
This was the first Easter since Pope Francis decreed in January that priests can include women in the foot-washing ritual, one of the most moving rites of the holiest week on the church’s calendar. The change had already happened in some churches, but since Francis made it official, it is now spreading worldwide.
Sanchez has been waiting for this for half a century. “I said, ‘Maybe sometime,'” she said. “This is the first time the pope said this opportunity has to be for ladies too. In this moment, I feel I’m privileged.”

The change is the most recent of Pope Francis’s slow but symbolically powerful efforts to expand women’s roles in church life.
On his first Easter after becoming pope in 2013, Francis washed the feet of women and Muslims at a juvenile detention center in Rome. While he has disappointed liberals within the church with his reiteration that women can’t be priests and his decision not to include women in his recent synods, he has also drawn attention to the gender wage gap, and he recently ended an inquiry into American nuns that many saw as anti-women.

As priests around the world took both women’s and men’s feet in their hands on Thursday, their gesture of humility represented to many the progress of inclusion in the Catholic church.
The Holy Week tradition models Jesus’s call for humility when he washed the feet of his Apostles at the Last Supper. In the gospel that was read on Thursday at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the country’s largest Catholic church, the apostle Peter asked, “Master, are you going to wash my feet?” And Jesus responded, “What I am doing, you do not understand now, but you will understand later.” Jesus also instructed the apostles at the Last Supper to continue the tradition of foot-washing.

Mosaic restoration depicting Jesus at Calvary an interfaith effort

JERUSALEM — The tens of thousands of Christians who visited the Church of the Holy Sepulchre this month got a special Easter treat: the chance to view the newly cleaned and restored mosaic that covers the ceiling and walls of a Franciscan chapel dedicated to Calvary, or Golgotha, the hill where Jesus was crucified.
They might also pause to marvel at this: The work of restoring those mosaics involves a joint effort of Palestinian Christians and Muslims.
The church, whose original structure was built in the 4th century, stands atop the sites where, according to Christian tradition, Jesus was crucified, buried, and resurrected.
Each year, pilgrims retrace the 14 locations — known as the Stations of the Cross — in Jesus’ final journey through Jerusalem, from the moment he was condemned to death to the moment he was laid in his tomb.
The church contains five of those stations: where Jesus was stripped of his clothes, nailed to the cross, died on the cross, was removed from the cross, and laid to rest.
From a distance, the 1930s Calvary mosaic, located in the church’s basilica, looks like an enormous tapestry. Winged angels, animals, grapevines appear throughout. In one scene, 12 doves fly over a large golden cross; in others, biblical figures, from Abraham and Moses to Paul and Jesus, appear like iridescent constellations in Jerusalem’s rich blue-purple sky. The entire mosaic is made of hand-cut glass, some of it overlaid with gold leaf and then baked in an oven.
Designed by Antonio Barluzzi, an Italian architect who designed several 20th-century churches, the mosaic surrounds a rare Crusader-era mosaic image of Jesus.
The job of caring for it and others that decorate thousands of feet of wall and floor space is the responsibility of a Palestinian team of restoration experts from the Jericho Mosaic Center, based in the West Bank town of Jericho. The town, which is mentioned in the Hebrew Bible, has a rich tradition of mosaic art.
Opened in 2002 by the late Rev. Michele Piccirillo, a Franciscan priest, archaeologist and mosaic specialist, the center — now an independent nonprofit — trains young Christian and Muslim Palestinians in the techniques necessary to restore and protect the Holy Land’s fragile mosaic treasures. It also teaches Palestinian schoolchildren to value and protect mosaics and other artifacts and to view them as part of their Palestinian heritage.
Funding for the center comes from the Italian government, UNESCO, the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land, foundations, and the European Union.
The Calvary restoration was a collaboration between the Mosaic Center and the Association pro Terra Sancta, a group that supports Franciscans working in the Holy Land.
Although foreign and Israeli antiquities experts have been restoring the Holy Land’s sacred and cultural sites for decades, it’s important for Palestinians to care for their cultural heritage, said Osama Hamdan, the Mosaic Center’s director.
“It’s not just a question of repair or conservation,” he said. “It’s an issue of cultural pride and empowerment.”
The center’s Palestinian experts have restored mosaics in iconic churches and an ancient West Bank synagogue. Their re-creation of the mosaics of the Dome of the Rock was widely exhibited throughout the Holy Land.
Hamdan said his center tries to bridge cultural gaps between Muslims, who make up 98 percent of the population in the Palestinian territories, and Christians, who make up only 2 percent.
“We bring schoolchildren to visit churches to explain the history and the importance of conserving all kind of cultural heritage in this country. There are separations, barriers, but we are working to remove these barriers,” he said.
Raed Khalil, a senior mosaic restorer with the Mosaic Center and supervisor of the Calvary project, said most, if not all, of the church’s mosaics were created by artists in Europe and mounted to the church’s walls and ceilings section by section.
Cleaning the mosaics is painstaking work, but only one element of a much larger process.
“There is the cleaning but also the documentation,” he said. “We take photos and enter the data into a computer. Then we analyze any problems or errors and plan the restoration. Before undertaking a cleaning, the team tests how a small section of the mosaic tiles and grout react to the cleaning materials.
“We survey the area. Are there any lost stones? We place small signs to hold the place where problems exist. If you destroy a mosaic, you destroy history,” Khalil said solemnly.
Anas Abu Tiar, a young member of Khalil’s team, said being a Muslim has not stopped him from appreciating the ethereal beauty of the Holy Sepulchre or respecting the Christian faith.
“I have many Christian friends. When it comes down to it, all people are one.”
Khalil, who is also Muslim, said that when he is working in a sacred place “I’m looking at the heritage, not religion or politics. This land is full of history and heritage. My job is to save them.”

BONO the CoExistor

"POPE": Defeat ISIS with ‘weapons of love’…

Francis urged the world in his Easter message on Sunday to use the “weapons of love” to combat the evil of “blind and brutal violence”, following the attacks in Brussels. After a week of sombre religious events commemorating Jesus’ death, Francis said an Easter Sunday Mass under tight security for tens of thousands of people in a sun-drenched St. Peter’s Square. Afterwards, in his traditional, twice-yearly “Urbi et Orbi” (to the city and the world) message, he spoke of violence, injustice and threats to peace in many parts of the world. “May he (the risen Jesus) draw us closer on this Easter feast to the victims of terrorism, that blind and brutal form of violence which continues to shed blood in different parts of the world,” he said, speaking from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica. READ MORE


Pope on Easter: Only mercy can save the world

ROME — In a poignant Easter address, Pope Francis denounced brutal crimes and war — the “spiritual and moral abysses of mankind” that provoke hatred and death — and proclaimed that only God’s mercy can save the world.
The Easter Sunday Urbi et Orbi address, “to the city and the world,” is normally used by popes to offer a review of the global situation, and Francis held to form, ticking off a series of challenges to peace and stability: From the conflict in Syria and terrorism across Europe and the Middle East, to the war in Ukraine and the social unrest in Venezuela.
He addressed the thousands gathered in St. Peter’s Square, amid heightened security controls after the recent terrorist attacks in Brussels, from the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica.
Francis began with Syria: “To the power of the risen Lord we entrust the talks now in course, that good will and the cooperation of all will bear fruit in peace and initiate the building of a fraternal society respectful of the dignity and rights of each citizen,” he said.
The pope also prayed for “other areas of the Mediterranean and the Middle East,” such as Iraq, also an ISIS stronghold, as well as Yemen and Libya.
Talking about the Holy Land, he said he hoped Christ’s resurrection might favor peace between Israelis and Palestinians, as well as the patience and commitment to set the foundations of a lasting peace.
Regarding the war in Ukraine, he called for a definitive solution, and expressed his hope for “the Lord of Life” to inspire humanitarian aid, “including the liberation of those who are detained.”
Although Francis didn’t mention the case specifically, his words could be a reference to Ukrainian pilot Nadiya Savchenko, recently condemned by a Russian court to 22 years in prison for calling in coordinates for shelling that killed two Russian journalists in eastern Ukraine.
The pope did make a direct reference to terrorism, saying he hoped Easter  might “draw us closer” to the victims of “that blind and brutal form of violence which continues to shed blood in different parts of the world,” such as Belgium, Turkey, Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, and Côte d’Ivoire.
From Latin America, his home continent, Francis only spoke of Venezuela, wishing for Sunday’s message to be felt not only in the people, who live in difficult conditions, but also by “those responsible for the country’s future.”
“May efforts be made everywhere to promote the culture of counter, justice and reciprocal respect, which alone can guarantee the spiritual and material welfare of all people,” he said.
The last sections of his address, which took place after he celebrated the Easter Mass, had an even more global scope, with Francis mentioning several situations of suffering, if not any particular geography.
For instance, Francis called for “the Easter message of the risen Christ” to be one of life for all humanity, leading the world to remember “the men and women seeking a better future,” particularly the “throng of migrants and refugees – including many children – fleeing from war, hunger, poverty and social injustice.”
He then mentioned many issues that have been at the top of his “social” agenda, such as modern-day slavery, those affected by drought or violent flooding as consequences of climate change, and those who have “lost all hope and joy in life,” such as the elderly who struggle alone, the young “who seem to have no future.”
To those persecuted “for their faith and their fidelity to the name of Christ,” Francis invited them to “hear once again the comforting words of the Lord: ‘Take courage; I have conquered the world!’”

Church Revolution in Pictures

Photo of the Week

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Occult message in the Vatican light show?

Under the pretext of protecting endangered animal species, on December 8, 2015, the Vatican promoted a slide show in which the screen was the façade of St. Peter's Basilica. We can legitimately criticize the use of the seat of the Catholic Church for this general purpose as a profanation. But here we want to focus on something else.

It seems that the show's producer had a special concern to present both animals and persons with magnetic gazes. Many of the projected animals had normal gazes, which excludes the possibility of the magnetic reflection in the eyes of the photos analyzed on this page being caused by some optical effect of the lights.

Now, a man with this type of magnetic gaze is usually someone involved in the occult, who is in a process of possession by the Devil, or is momentarily experiencing some extreme distress such as fury, fear or suffering. When someone constantly has such a gaze he is either an esoteric or a psychologically unbalanced person.

Likewise, an animal with such a gaze is generally experiencing some extreme distress: fury, fear or suffering. When it constantly has this gaze it is rabid or a symbol of evil that God created to help man be vigilant.

So, the question why the show's producer featured these possessed looking creatures – with due approval of the Vatican officials – remains unanswered.

Consider the lemur above, which looks crazy or possessed; then, take a look at the sinister reptiles in the first section below. Are these really endangered species or did the show's director take a special pleasure in picturing these symbols of the Devil on the Vatican Basilica's façade?

The second section presents other animals that have the same gaze. The third section shows first, the owl, a symbol of Freemasonry, then, a two-horned insect that also reminds us of the Devil, then, a sinister fish and a frog. If any of these animals were to appear on the façade of the Basilica as a sign sent by God, everyone would say that it was a bad presage – a message that the Vatican had been overtaken by devilish forces.

The fourth section shows human faces – certainly not a species in danger of extinction – all with that magnetic gaze. Again the question arises: Why project these gazes except to send an occult message?

In the fifth section we see what seems to be Tibetan monks, first, in meditation, then, walking around; next, almost nude Indians and, finally, the Vatican consumed by flames and smoke while a small group of Bedouins camp in the desert.

Is this last section a part of the answer? In this case, an occult and ecological Vatican strongly infiltrated by the Devil would be reduced to ashes, only to adopt a Buddhist inspiration and promote tribalism to replace the present day temporal society.

We do not present this interpretation as a demonstrated thesis, but as a possible explanatory hypothesis for such an unusual ”artistic” display on the Vatican’ façade.

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Italian cardinal: refugee crisis is opportunity for Europe to rediscover its soul

The “immense joy” of the Resurrection is mingled with the “inexpressible pain” of 60 million migrants and refugees, an Italian cardinal said in an article published on the front page of L’Osservatore Romano on Easter Sunday.
Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti of Perugia – Città della Pieve, who wrote the meditations used during the Way of the Cross in the Colosseum on Good Friday, recalled the example of Giorgio La Pira (1904-77), a mayor of Florence and Dominican tertiary known for his strong commitment to those in need.
Recalling La Pira’s statement that the “the pains and joys of man are pains and joys of Christ,” Cardinal Bassetti said that refugee camps, with their often hellish conditions, challenge a Europe beset by an “endless economic crisis and a profound crisis of values” to return to its roots and “rediscover its soul,” as Blessed Paul VI, St. John Paul II, and Pope Benedict XVI invited the continent to do.


Archbishop Jozef De Kesel warns against hatred of Islam

Catholic World News is reporting that Archbishop Jozef De Kesel of Mechelen-Brussels, in an interview, "warned of the 'current risk' of 'hatred' of Islam—something, he said, that the terrorists wish to provoke. He called for prayer and for commitment to 'a more fraternal society, with more solidarity, built on respect for the other: these are Gospel values.'"

Solidarity with evil?

We shouldn't hate error?

Archbishop, with all due respect for your office, have you lost your mind?

Our Lord wept over Jerusalem and said, "If only you knew what makes for peace" (Lk 19:42). And now we do know (those of us who Christian in more than name). Only a life lived in conformity with the mind of Christ as shown to us by His Catholic Church can bring true peace. By contrast, "Pride inflates man; envy consumes him; avarice makes him restless; anger rekindles his passions; gluttony makes him ill; comfort destroys him; lies imprison him; murder defiles him...the very pleasures of sin become the instruments of punishment in the hands of God." (Pope Innocent III, On the Misery of the Human Condition).

It is our duty as Catholics to remind others of these truths and to expose those who are promoting sin or error. But often we will find ourselves being criticized (even by other Catholics, whose commitment toward Catholic teaching is, at best, questionable) for doing so. This should never deter us. When such people accuse us of "negativity," we should recall the words of Dr. Dietrich von Hildebrand: "..the rejection of evil and of sin is a response which is purely positive and morally called for, and it possesses a high moral value. One cannot truly love God, without hating the devil. One cannot really love the truth, without hating error. One cannot find the truth and grasp it clearly as such, without seeing through errors. Knowledge of truth is inseparably linked with knowledge of error, with the unmasking of error.* All talk about the superiority of 'yes' over 'no,' about the 'negativity' of rejecting that which should be rejected, is so much idle chatter." (The Cult of the 'Positive').

* "I would maintain that fear of error is simply necessary to the genuine love of truth." (John Cardinal Newman, Grammar of Assent).

Fr. Felix Sarda Y Salvany explains in his work "Liberalism is a Sin," that, "..the wolf has always been called the wolf; and in so calling it, no one has ever believed that wrong was done to the flock and the shepherd...In his Introduction to the Devout Life, that precious and popular work, he [St. Francis de Sales, a Doctor of the Church] expresses himself: 'If the declared enemies of God and of the Church ought to be blamed and censured with all possible vigor, charity obliges us to cry wolf when the wolf slips into the midst of the flock and in every way and place we may meet him.'" (pp. 97, 100-101).

I have often been criticized for speaking the hard truths. For exposing error and for calling it what it is. So be it. I'm not interested in popularity contests or being a friend of the world. Simply put, I choose not to be a coward. I agree with Pope Leo XIII who said, "To recoil before an enemy, or to keep silence when from all sides such clamors are raised against truth, is the part of a man either devoid of character or who entertains doubt as to the truth of what he professes to believe. In both cases such mode of behaving is base and is insulting to God, and both are incompatible with the salvation of mankind." ( Sapientiae Christianae, AAS 22 (1889-90) 390, PE, 111.14).

How about you dear reader? Aren't there enough chicken-Catholics in the world?

Meditation: Galatians 1:10


New Jesuit Santa Clara U. theology dean (and former Georgetown VP for Mission and Ministry) opened IgnatianQ(ueer) Conference

New Jesuit Santa Clara U. theology dean (and former Georgetown VP for Mission and Ministry) opened IgnatianQ(ueer) Conference

Conference creates ‘safe spaces’ for students at Jesuit institutions who are involved with LGBTQ work
[He joins another Jesuit hotbed of sexual perversity]
MARCH 28, 2016 @ cal-catholic.com/?p=23119
Father O’Brien at the 2015 IgnatianQ Conference.

On March 24, CalCatholic published a press release from the Jesuit Santa Clara University announcing the appointment of Kevin O’Brien, SJ, as the new Dean of their School of Theology. Prior to his appointment, Fr. O’Brien had served as the Vice President for Mission and Ministry at the Jesuit Georgetown University.
A CalCatholic commenter immediately pointed out: “Last year, Dean O’Brien was a keynote speaker at IgnatianQ. ‘IgnatianQ: The Ignatian LGBTQ & Ally Conference is a student-led conference that focuses on the intersections of faith, sexuality, and social justice in a Jesuit campus context. IgnatianQ hopes to educate the whole person by creating safe spaces for dialogue, reconciliation, understanding, growth, and community building. The conference provides students with the opportunity to build their support network with students at Jesuit institutions all over the country as they continue LGBTQ work at their respective schools.’”
In a March 26, 2015 article promoting the IgnatianQ LGBTQ & Ally Conference, the Georgetown Voice quoted Fr. O’Brien’s endorsement: “Vice President for Mission and Ministry Fr. Kevin O’ Brien will give an opening address and prayer at the conference. ‘Campus Ministry supports the IgnatianQ conference because of its mission to deepen the faith lives of participants and build community across Jesuit universities.’” According to the Georgetown Hoya, the weekend included the 10th Annual Genderfunk (“drag”) Ball.
The orientation of the conference was homosexuality, not Catholicism. As the quoted mission statement says: “The conference provides students with the opportunity to build their support network with students at Jesuit institutions all over the country as they continue LGBTQ work at their respective schools.” To unpack the sentence: the purpose of “build(ing) their support network,” the very reason for “the support network” was to “continue LGBTQ work.” Not Catholic work. LGBTQ work.
Georgetown’s 2014 Genderfunk ball attendees.

So, if Fr. O’Brien wanted to “deepen the faith lives of participants” he had his work cut out for him. An indispensible first step would have been to re-orient the students’ perspective within Catholicism, not homosexuality. A clear statement depicting the actual, existing dis-orientation was given by Kaitlin Campbell, writing on March 27, 2015, in dotCommonweal. She reported from the first IgnatianQ Conference, held at Fordham University in 2014:
“The talk that received the most negative reception from the student attendees was the talk that presented official church teaching on homosexuality—‘Unapologetically Catholic & Christian.’ Right off the bat: ‘We are a Catholic University, what we do is follow the gospel of Jesus Christ and we do not apologize. It’s a venerable feat that we can get together for something like this.’ To begin a talk like this suggests that the participants of IgnatianQ were gathering together to demand an apology from the church for following the gospel of Jesus Christ. If in fact there were any demand for apology (and there wasn’t), it would be that the church apologize for not following the gospel of Jesus Christ. “
When faced with an orientation that judges the Church on how it conforms to homosexuality, rather than the other way around, it would seem to be the job of priests to correct the dis-orientation, and to teach students that “we are not here to save the Church; the Church is here to save us.” But that of course requires priests who are properly oriented themselves, and accept and proclaim Church teaching on the sinfulness of homosexual acts. There is no evidence that the institutional Jesuits at either Georgetown or Santa Clara have asserted that homosexual acts are sinful.
Fr. O’Brien will be joining the Jesuit Community at Santa Clara, whose rector is Fr. Michael Zampelli, SJ. In 2010, CalCatholic reported:
“On October 26, 2005, at an SCU seminar titled ‘Is Tolerance Enough: Catholic Universities and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Issues,’ Fr. Zampelli expanded on the theme of ‘problematizing particular kinds of relationships.’ He said, ‘Those of us who identify as lgbtq have a particular fix on the world, and what we have come to understand about ourselves, our society, our religions, our scholarly disciplines, from this particular perspective makes an invaluable contribution to the store of knowledge.’
Tolerance of homosexuality in the priesthood, said Fr. Zampelli, ‘must be a temporary state of affairs that includes an acknowledgement that we are ‘on the road,’ that understanding more and becoming more understanding takes time.’

Fr. Zampelli also suggested that homosexuality must be celebrated, not just tolerated. ‘In this case, tolerance is unacceptable,’ he said. ‘Why? Because, I believe deeply (along with Paul in Corinthians) that ‘I am what I am by the grace of God.’ And I believe that I have particular gifts deriving precisely from this blessed but marginalized way of being in the world. What I see clearly now is my own desire: I want to be a subject sought out and valued.’”

 Vatican II: The Golden Ticket to Hell via man's new "utopia"!
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