APOLOGETICS
Copyrightę 1998 by "morphogenesis"



So-called "We Are Church" petition



Last years (1996-97), there was this so-called "We Are Church" petition by modernist, secular folks who seek to destroy the Roman Catholic Church, the Mystical Body of Christ by making her conform to modernist, secular, heretical norms of this world. I read this petition started in Germany(?) but it was a flop there and then "this evil" arrived here in the USA but it was again a flop because it did not garner the amount of petitioners that the organizers expected. This petition seeked to overhaul the sacraments and their sacredness by modifying them to have what the secular, modernist, feminist world wants, ie. women ordination, same-gender marriages, contraception be promoted inside and outside marriage encouraging the young minds to have sex outside of marriage, etc., and many more such evil that can only come from the bad influences of the modern world. They seek to make God bend over backwards that instead of the sacraments being "God's call" it becomes "people's-call-so-forget-about-God". They also persecute the Church by twisting what she teaches and how she teaches us by making others think that she is other than a Very Loving Holy Mother Church to the people of God, concerned about the welfare of God's people and their eternal salvation. Bottom line, this petition seeks to disobey God's teachings and sacraments thru the Church and promote such disobediences to God's people.

To counter this evil, there has been another group of petitioners called, "We Are Catholics". This one has tried to straighten-out and correct the heresies, errors and misleads by the "We Are Church" petition by bringing others into the light of the Truth of Church teachings and sacraments and how God wills and wants them to be, ie. only-men ordination, man-woman marriage, Humanae Vitae's ban on contraception because contraceptives are contra-conception and therefore contra-God-the-Creator of life. Thus, this counter-petition brings back focus to God, obedience of His way and will thru the teachings of the Catholic Church.

A couple of excerpts from emails that went around last year and this year included here below:

Exposure of the errors of "We Are Church"



Seton School, 9314 Maple Street, Manassas, Virginia 20110

Real Catholics

The senior class of Seton School is presenting you with an opportunity to defend your Faith, as all confirmed Catholics should. Mrs. Carroll, our principal, recently read to us literature she had received addressed to "Religion Teacher." The content, however, had nothing to do with our religion. "We Are Church," apparently a global organization, was seeking our signatures, and, incidentally, our contributions, to a worldwide petition which is to be presented to the Pope himself. Claiming to be a zealous agent of Church reform, their actual words betrayed nothing more than another rehash of the current liberal agenda. The Referendum, as they put it, consists mainly of the following five items:

They believe in a "loving church" where the "People of God" choose their own bishops and pastors. Apparently, they confuse love with democracy, a mistake common in this part of the world. Jesus took the time, while He walked the earth, to set up the Church as it stands. Anything else is secondguessing God.

They believe in equal rights for women. So does the Church. But, they define equal rights as ordaining women. The question of female ordination has nothing to do with "equal rights." A woman can't be a priest for the same reason a man can't be a mother. God made it that way.

They call for a church where priests may choose to marry, and where "the right of a congregation to the Eucharist and pastoral care is more important than a rule of canon law." As to the first point, the Church has never held that it is intrinsically immoral for a priest to wed. This is a discipline, up to the Pope, which may be changed at any time. As to the second point, we question where in the Code of Canon Law the Church forbids any congregation the right to a valid liturgy, and a valid riest. This phrase can only be taken to portray a desire for illicit liturgies currently forbidden in which case, the whole controversy is somewhat pointless; as they are cutting themselves off from the body of Christ, Canon Law becomes a moot point.

They believe in a church which "affirms the goodness of human sexuality." Try the Vatican. Only orthodox Catholicism maintains the goodness of human sexuality; only we think sex is so sacred, that it can only be right between two people forever committed to each other in marriage, and without the interference of unnatural manmade contraceptives. However, "We Are Church" goes on to claim "primacy of conscience" in issues of sexual morality (like birth control). Primacy over what? Objective truth? God made man. It's not the other way around. Man has no business attempting to reinterpret the moral order of the universe.

They go on to claim "the human rights of all persons, regardless of sexual orientation." Since when has the Catholic Church suggested denying human rights to anyone? But, in their definition of 'human rights', it is quite probable they mean nothing other than complete acceptance of perverse 'alternate lifestyles.' This gets back to that whole point about God making us. Generally, sane humanity has a way of being disgusted with that sort of behavior. But, even if some insist that sin is perfectly normal, their outlook has nothing to do with the objective moral truth.

They also throw in a final point, which, basically, covers about everything besides sexuality. One might question what their main focus actually is. But they do take the time to accuse the Church of ignoring peace, nonviolence, and social justice. And preserving the environment. Aside, perhaps, from that last point, the Catholic Church is currently the world's leading organization in the quest for peace and justice. "We Are Church", as they seek their million American signatures, and amass millions of dollars- which, as they admit elsewhere, will be funneled to similar organizations promoting their own ideology (in other words, it's all in the family)-has absolutely no right to accuse the Catholic Church of inactivity in this area. In fact, we are aware of no actual labors for peace or social justice on the part of "We Are Church" as an organization.

Finally, they express belief in a church which "affirms rather then condemns, asserts primacy of conscience in all things, and embraces those who are divorced and remarried, married priests, and theologians and others who exercise freedom of speech." The Church does not condemn people. People condemn themselves. The Church can't change what's right and wrong. They just tell the world what God has ordained throughout eternity. This is why there is no 'primacy of conscience', why it is wrong to divorce and remarry, and why one can't 'exercise free speech', if by that one means spreading dissension, and (may we use the word) heresy, among the People of God.

"We Are Church" is a church but not ours. They are not Catholic. And those of us who are need to let them and the rest of the world know what it means to belong to the Catholic Church.

We ask you to sign this statement (absolutely no contributions, please), and, if convenient, to spread it among your friends and parish members. We intend to invite a representative of "We Are Church" to our class to see all these signatures, and explain politely that there most certainly are plenty of real Catholics left in this part of the world. We will then send the signatures to the Holy Father.

We ask for your prayers and sacrifices for our Church, and for the people of "We Are Church", that their minds and hearts will be opened to God's truth and love.

Thank you and God Bless,
Class of 1997

The Counter Petition URL:

http://www.hli.org/services/publications/reports/sr143.html
For information, Write: Seton School, 9314 Maple Street, Manassas Virginia 20110.

The news that tells the petition loses and was a flop



Excerpted from Catholic World Report

965,000 SIGNATURES SHORT - An Embarrassing failure for American Dissidents

Ordinarily the cover of Catholic World Report draws the reader's attention to an important news story inside the magazine. But this month's cover does not correspond to any feature article. In a sense, we might say that our cover refers to a news development which does not really merit serious notice; the story is that there is no story.

Back in May 1996, a coalition of dissident American Catholics came together under the title of "We Are Church", and announced a massive petition drive, designed to bring about fundamental changes in the Church. Their plan involved the collection of one million signatures on a "referendum" calling for the Church to end the tradition of priestly celibacy, ordain women, allow public election of pastors and bishops, and jettison Catholic teachings regarding human sexuality and the integrity of marriage.

We Are Church was not fussy about the people who signed the petition. They made no effort to determine whether signatories were practicing Catholics. Pseudonyms such as "Distraught Deacon" and "Stifled Sister" were accepted, on the grounds that some Catholics might face punishment if they were indentified. In January 1997, CWR uncovered a scheme in which We Are Church offered financial incentives to young children who collected signatures from their grammar-school classmates.

Still, despite all these concessions to expediency, the dissidents had trouble collecting signatures. Originally they had planned to deliver the one million signatures to the Vatican on May 18, 1997, which was Pentacost Sunday. But the delivery date was set back by several months, allowing the organizers more time to drum up support.

Finally, on October 11 - the 35th anniversy of the opening of Vatican II - We Are Church held its long awaited conference in Rome. With a last rhetorical flourish, the Ammerican dissidents delivered the fruits of their laborious effort, a paltry 35,000 signatures.

There are approximately 62 million Catholics living in the United States today. So after nearly 18 months, We Are Church had managed to collect signatures from just .06 percent of the eligible population, or roughly one of every 1,800 Catholic Americans.

How difficult is it to rally 35,000 people behind a cause. Mother Angelica receives financial contributions from that many people every month. On that same Saturday in October, dozens of American college football teams drew more than 35,000 spectators to their games. And unlike these football fans, who paid for tickets, braved the traffic, and devoted a full afternoon to the game - and perhaps did the very same thing again the following Saturday - those who signed the We Are Church petition only had to scrawl their names (or a pseudonym!) on a piece of paper.

In the American political system, laws can be enacted or repealed through the two-stage process of petition and referendum. A successful petition drive - the collection of the required number of signatures - does not settle the issue, it merely places the question on the ballot, to be decided by the referendum vote. If ordinary public laws cannot be changed by a petition drive alone, what wild arrogance led the American dissidents to believe that they could collect enough signatures to change the laws of God and teachings of His Church?

No, Catholic doctrines are not decided by majority vote. But it is worth noticing that We Are Church could generate support from only an insignificant fraction of the Catholic populace. If this really had been a "referendum" - that is, a free and open ballot - the dissidents would have been crushed by a landslide.

By the time they arrived in Rome in October, the organizers of We Are Church had clearly lost their ability to command public attention, and their last desperate efforts took on an air of comic opera. When a Swiss Guard hustled her out of St Peter's Square, Sister Maureen Fielder, SL, the group's chief American representative, complained that he should have been charged with "sexual harrassment." A group of feminists who had planned to disrupt ordination ceremonies at a nearby cathedral were thwarted when their train was delayed. The million-signature drive was an abject failure.

Do America's noisy dissidents really deserve a serious hearing? Or are they leaders without a constituency - generals without an army? In this issue of CWR, our Essay asks why bishops do not take action against those who clearly reject Church teachings; our Interview examines the case of a bishop who did take action. In the wake of the We Are Church debacle, perhaps other American bishops will follow suit.

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Adoration vs. Fellowship - II



After I wrote part 1 of this preface, the next day, Sunday, something more occurred to me before going to Mass. Here it is, as "addendum" or even post-conclusion, or conclusion to the conclusion to part 1.

As mentioned in the preceding section, it can be concluded that the big difference between the greatest and first commandment (love God with all...) from the second (love others as yourself...) is to whom the love is directed at. That is why Jesus made the first greatest because it refers to the love of God, Almighty which is incomparable to loving ourselves and others as well who are just humans. Our love for God is comprised of "adoration" towards Him, that involves all our heart, soul, mind and strength - basically our whole being.

This can be wholely achieved everytime at Mass because God really becomes present before us at Mass. This does not happen at your regular social gathering or even what non-Catholics call "fellowship" regardless if it were held inside the church.

And here's what occurred to me to prove even more how different the Holy Mass is from regular "fellowship" gatherings by non-Catholics in the church.

Notice that regardless of having "readings" and "talks" from the Word of God by non-Catholics in their fellowships, nowhere, I repeat, nowhere will anybody be caught kneeling before anything or anybody in such "fellowship" gatherings, even if it is held inside a "church".

The jist of this writeup is the huge difference between the 1st and greatest commandment vs. the 2nd, and so "adoration"vs. "fellowship". And most of those in non-Catholic's Sunday gatherings are mostly "fellowship" again which we already do most of the week, most of the 168 hours in a week.

I believe in the "love in our heart for God" when we pray without kneeling, prostrating, etc. but adoration is the ultimate one which is most despicable for satan to do (due to pride, etc.) and this angle needs to be emphasized because there is indeed full worship of God's presence that happensat our Holy Mass but usually absent in non-Catholic Sunday gathering in church. (I mean, that's why nobody can just kneel before another even if Jesus is in them or in their heart because we simply are not God.)

It is a must to do what is due towards our God - adore Him with all and prostration as we must. That shows our churches have not been stricken down by what Daniel warned from Scripture - about the desolating abomination at the altar; such that churches/temples become empty of God, as God would not dwell in it anymore.

And I mean literally "dwell" and "actually be there", and so people can really kneel down, prostrate themselves to really adore God, right there.

Thus, on regular non-Catholics church-gathering, no adoration towards the Divine God's presence occurs which is the core of "loving God with all..." because you would not catch satan kneeling before The Divine God and so as believers in God, it is the ultimate way to show our love for Him by "adoring" Him and showing it with actual kneeling or even prostration towards Him.

And adoration involves our whole being kneeling, even prostrating before God and only God. Remember "...that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth..." (Phil 2:10)

You bend our knees before God but not before humans, even if they have Jesus in them.

So why isn't anybody kneeling in those "talks" and "fellowhips" using the Word of God, where they even shout "Jesus' name"?

That's because even if they have Jesus in them, it is not God, the Son Jesus who is really present there Whom they may adore and love. Again, it shows how there is mostly only practise of the second commandment "love others as yourself" (ie. what-benefit-can-I-derive-from-this?) that is there but the actual love and adoration towards God can not be accomplished because they can not adore and kneel before each other since they are merely humans.

Thus, say all you want about "Jesus being present" in each one of us. Say, the name "Jesus" over and over again in such "talks" but no way, I repeat, no way would anybody kneel before someone who has Jesus. Why? That's because even if Jesus is in each one of us, it is the "human" Jesus who is in us that we treat each other as "love others as yourself" or with the golden rule, "do unto others as what you would want others to do unto you" or like Christ's example in Matthew 27 - "when I was hungry, you fed Me..."

These only satisfies the second commandment.

But there is no "kneeling, prostrating" or simply adoration amidst those, which is the ultimate act to show our love and worship towards God - our whole being submitting to Him.

"Kneeling" - you know, that act which satan would not dare do because it is the ultimate means of showing how much we love God with all our heart, soul, mind, body, and strength - our whole being kneeling before him.

"Kneeling" has such connotation of "worship", that's why even satan attempted to make Jesus do it towards him at the desert and guess what Jesus told him - "...The Lord, your God, shall you worship and Him alone shall you serve."

But no "worship" occurs in such "fellowships" by non-Catholics even in their churches because again, God is not present there so they could not and would not even attempt to "kneel down" nor "bow down" before anything or anybody.

Thus, more of the "horizontally oriented" acts occur during fellowship which already takes up most of the week in our life, that's usually occurring in such fellowship regardless if it were inside a church. And that only serves the second commandment, "love others as yourself", just as we are only serving humans, even the human Jesus within us, in such acts.

"Adoration" of God is the core of the greatest and first commandment - "Love God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, with all your strength".

Prostration and kneeling are acts of adoration and worship.

That's why satan does not do it and instead makes others do it towards himself.

And what is the greatest means provided for us by the Catholic Church so that we can accomplish worship, adoration, submission, prostration and kneeling to fulfill "love for God with all our being"?

The Holy Mass.

That's why at the consecration of the gifts of bread and wine which turns to the Real Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ - we kneel.

We worship our Lord God.

We have that great opportunity to do such thing which is despicable to satan.

And so, as Catholics, we kneel and bow before our Lord God at Mass to show Him our love to Him with our whole being "worshipping Him".

At the name of Jesus, every knee should bend...

And so at Holy Mass, the Divine Jesus Christ becomes truly present at the altar table, the Lamb of God, whom the 24 elders in heaven bow down to because He is the only One worthy of opening the "seal" (Revelation 5).

That Jesus.

No, not just the human Jesus in us which we can not worship.

Rather, that Glorious and Divine Jesus whom we bow down to at Mass and we receive in Holy Communion.

Thus, there should be no more doubt in our hearts, the great difference between "adoration" vs. "fellowhip" in churches.

Adoration, the ultimate act of love towards God (that the evil one despises and won't do) can be done at the Holy Mass because Our Lord Jesus Christ actually becomes present before us at the altar table. Thus, at the "Real" Jesus' Name, we bend our knees to adore Him. Greatly satisfying the greatest and first commandment.

Can't do this in fellowship meetings by non-Catholics in their churches. No Lord God to love and worship. Thus, only satisfying the second commandment of "love others as yourself" which already takes up most of our daily lives during the week anyway (interactions with others at home, work, play, date, etc.)

Thus, it is clear we must go attend Holy Mass and really be involved in "holiness" of God, to see the Divine Lord, to adore, worship, kneel before Him.

In conclusion to the previous conclusion, the big difference between "adoration" and "fellowship" is "kneeling" and so the big difference between the first commandment from the second commandment is "adoration". There is adoration of God in the first but not in the second.

Take the chance to kneel before God (which satan avoids) by attending Holy Mass and show God our love for Him by the ultimate act of adoring Him there.

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Can We Really Talk To The Dead?



More erroneous accusations and misconclusions by non-Catholics have been posted and "can we really talk to the dead?" is just another one of them titles which show a great misunderstanding of what has gone on in Christian life on earth "in communion" with those eternally-living saints in heaven.

First of all, let us not make the mistake of equating astrology, horoscope, palmistry and other New Age spiritualities to "private revelations" and "private messengers" coming to visionaries, interlocutors, dreamers, that may actually be from God!

And so please take note that the Catholic Church actually bans even condemns beliefs in horoscopes, palmistry, mediums, etc., and such "new-age" spiritualities. She warns people from falling for such "spiritualities" because she knows they are not from God and so she has always told Catholics to stay away from them.

As for "apparitions", "visions", "dreams", which are NOT exactly equal to those listed under new age spiritualities, she still warns us from falling for them especially if they are taking away our belief in the One True God or causing us disobedience of Him and straying away from His teachings and the Church!

Remember, however, how St. Gabriel, the Archangel, appeared to Mary; how dreams occurred to Daniel, David, Joseph; how Moses and Elijah appeared to Jesus Christ and how Christ talked to them at the Transfiguration event; how angels talked/appeared to prophets and saints which are all in Scripture!

Thus, regarding Church approved apparitions of Our Lord and Our Lady (ie. Fatima, Lourdes, and just about only 7 more out of thousands and thousands of claims) to saints/prophets/ "visionaries", the Church studies them carefully for many, many years before actually approving them as "worthy of belief" but with an exception clause that says "although not necessary for our faith", but mostly to the person receiving the "message".

Sometimes, the reason behind such "apparitions" is conversion back to God and His way. Remember how Tobit and Sarah received "appearance" from St. Raphael, which prevented them from committing suicide?

(Take for example the apparition of Mary in La Salette, France in 1846 (an approved apparition of Our Lady). This place was so much slacking in their belief and devotion to God. Their one church was always empty on Sundays because people were busy earning a living and are also working on Sundays. People used God's name in vain; curses in Jesus' name, etc. And so, one day, Mary appeared as a weeping lady to 2 young shepherds (Maximin and Melanie). "The beautiful lady" told the kids when they asked why she was weeping, that she "could not hold her Son's heavy hand any longer". Because you see, Jesus was ready to destroy their place and as always, Mary, as any good mother, would try to see what she could do to prevent the "wrath of God" from falling upon these people. And so the kids told their parents about the "message". At first the elders did not believe but due to a specific "childhood story" about his father which nobody else knew until the boy narrated, as told to him by the "beautiful lady", so the father believed. And one thing led to another that it reached the bishop. Of course, the Church studied the case for a while. And yes, the "drought" occurred to the place anyway proving Mary's warning was true, after which people got converted.)

When the Church approves "apparitions", it is just like writing down what happened to Mary at the Annunciation (announcement of Christ's incarnation), or that Moses and Elijah appeared and talked to Jesus at the time prior to His arrest! The Church simply confirms they actually happened!

If these "humans" did not believe that the angels or the saints appeared and talked to them, then there goes history and the stories that happened as told in Scripture about angels and "dead" saints from the Old Testament appearing to some people in the New Testament.

Mary would not be able to say "yes, be it done unto me according to thy words" to God if the Archangel Gabriel did not appear to her to tell her what was going to happen, and so on.

We can know that they are from God by their fruits!

Thus, Mary obeyed God and gave her "yes" to Him to bear the Son of God. St. Peter, who was imprisoned, was freed by angels sent by God to release him. Moses and Elijah, who were supposedly dead, appeared to Jesus Christ to tell Him of His upcoming persecution. Conversion back to God stories that have occurred through Church-approved apparitions.

Supposedly "dead" saints (and angels) talking to those here on earth!

Impossible?

Not with God, especially if there is an important "reminder" to be disclosed to the person receiving the "private appearance" or revelation.

You see, it is God's prerogative, since He is afterall God, to choose to send angels or other saints to "deliver a message", "help someone in need", "remind others to go back to God", "warn people", (ie. Jonah warning Nineveh), etc., instead of doing so directly Himself, such that the person directly hears God's voice. His voice may be in the form of an "angel" or a "saint" appearing to the person.

So, to answer the question, "can we really talk to the dead", - definitely! With belief in God, Who can do anything, this is possible, just as what happened in Scripture and in private revelation and "private appearances" of angels and saints to people on earth.

These are no where equal or equivalent even to "new age" spiritualities, the origins of which are undetermined and so the Church forbids us to fall for them.

Thus, regarding "talking to saints" - who are you to say they are dead???

Who are you to say that Moses and Elijah are dead so they should not be appearing to Jesus or talking to Him. Likewise, Jesus should not have talked to these "dead saints".

This seems to show a lack of belief in God's power.

It also shows the great misunderstanding of Christ's power "to save"!

If non-Catholics believe in the impossibility of "talking to saints", it shows they don't really know what "eternal salvation" is because even though saints may be dead physically, they are very much alive eternally. That's the result of Christ redeeming and salvific grace! And so, thanks be to God and His power for they have inherited eternal life!

If it is utterly immoral and wrong, why did we catch Jesus talking to the "dead" Moses and Elijah???

Now remember that parable which Christ told, about the rich man who died and went to hell, and the poor man who died and went to heaven? Suffering in hell, the rich man could see the poor man being comforted by Abraham in heaven. And the story went such that the rich man asked Abraham to send somebody to earth so that somebody can warn the other rich people (his brothers) to be good to the poor so as not to suffer the consequences he's suffering.

Now remember Abraham's reply? To put it bluntly - if the earthlings can't and won't believe prophets or people who are alive telling them that they should do good things, how much more won't they believe "dead people" coming back to them to warn them they must do good so as not to suffer the consequences?

Bottom line, it is really easy for God to send "dead people" (saints) to deliver messages to earthlings but difficult part is the willingness of these people to believe them. And it is likewise possible to be "communicating" with angels and saints as God wills and allows.

Afterall, with God and belief in His power, anything is possible.

So when you believe, remove all doubts, and really believe in Him!

And as the Catholic Church has carefully discerned that we can and may pray to saints, angels, messengers of God in heaven, and as the Church has approved some "private appearances" and "private revelations" to some visionaries (just as what happened in Scripture to prophets and saints), it is with great faith in God and His power that there is no doubt, we can really talk to the "dead" (those whom God has given eternal life)!

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