Stand By for a Great Catholic Ebook Sale

IndieCatholicWritersSaleHi, everyone.

This coming week the members of the Indie Catholic Authors Google+ group are having a sale. From June 24th to 26th, 16 great Catholic books (including Church Triumphant) will be available for 99 cents or less. Visit the Indie Catholic Authors blog post for more information: https://indiecatholicauthors.wordpress.com/2015/06/15/major-catholic-ebook-sale-next-week/.

P.S. We desperately need your help. Please sign up for our Thunderclap campaign so we can reach more people. If you sign up, Thunderclap will post a one-time message on you Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr account on June 24th about the sale. If we don’t get the required 100 supporters by the 24th, no messages will be sent out. Please hurry, we only have 3 days left. Thanks in advance

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Cardinal Burke Fighting Heresy

BurkePreventingHeresy

Source: St. Peter’s List

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Saint eBook Now Available for Pre-Order

Church Triumphant ebook

Church Triumphant ebook

I’m happy to announce the release of my new ebook about the saints, Church Triumphant: 25 Men and Women who Gave Their Lives to Christ. This new ebook is available for preorder from Amazon, Barnes and NobleKobo, and iTunes. Church Triumphant will be officially released on April 5th, Easter Sunday.

This book includes the biographies of the following saints: St. Gonsalo Garcia, St. Andreas Wouters, Blessed Charles I of Austria, Blessed Charles de Foucauld, St. Clement Maria Hofbauer, St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows, St. Gerard Majella, St. Gianna Molla, Blessed John Henry Newman, St. Maria Goretti, St. Maximilian Kolbe, St. Nicholas, St Peter Julian Eymard, Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, Pope St. Pius X, St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, St. Charbel Makhluf, Venerable Bishop Frederic Baraga, Venerable Fulton J. Sheen, Blessed José Luis Sánchez del Río, St. Kateri Tekakwitha, St. Marianne Cope, Blessed Miguel Pro, Servant of God Father Patrick Peyton.

If you have friends who enjoy reading about the saint, please tell them about Church Triumphant: 25 Men and Women who Gave Their Lives to Christ.

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What is Laetare Sunday?

Today is Laetare Sunday, also known as the fourth Sunday of Lent. Laetare Sunday is one of the most solemn days of the year. It takes it’s name from the first word of the entrance antiphon or introit: “Laetare Jerusalem: et conventum facite omnes qui diligitis eam: gaudete cum laetitia”, “Rejoice, O Jerusalem: and come together all you that love her: rejoice with joy”. On this one day, the Church interrupts the solemn and penitent air of the previous days and weeks of Lent with words of joy and rejoicing. Why? It seems so out of place during a time when we have been constantly reminded since Ash Wednesday to drive sin out of our lives with prayer and fasting. To suddenly be called to rejoice seems to be out of character for the season.

"Weltliche Schatzkammer Wien (129)" by MyName (Gryffindor) - Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Weltliche_Schatzkammer_Wien_(129).JPG#/media/File:Weltliche_Schatzkammer_Wien_(129).JPG

Golden Rose by Giuseppe and Pietro Paolo Spagna. Rome, around 1818/19. Kept today in the Imperial Treasury in Hofburg Imperial Palace in Vienna.

However, this one day of rejoicing in the middle of Lent is a sign that the Church deeply understands the needs of her children. She knows the we need all the encouragement we can get. So in the midst of our penance and mortification, the Church gives us a preview of the coming joys of Easter to give us the courage to finish the race, to fight the good fight.

On Laetare Sunday, the priest wears rose colored vestments, instead of the Lenten purple, as a sign of rejoicing. This tradition originated from an ancient papal ceremony called the Blessing of the Golden Rose. The practise is thought to have originated in the Middle Ages. The pope would often bless a golden rose either before or during the Laetare Sunday Mass. Afterwards, the newly blessed rose would be sent to a Catholic monarch, church, or city as a sign of honor. Pope Innocent III said the following: “As Laetare Sunday, the day set apart for the function, represents love after hate, joy after sorrow, and fullness after hunger, so does the rose designate by its colour, odour and taste, love, joy and satiety respectively.”

Now, go forth and rejoice for the glories of Easter are close at hand.

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Announcing Release Date of Church Triumphant Ebook

Church Triumphant ebook

Church Triumphant ebook

I announced in January that I would release a book about the saints during Lent. I am now happy to announce that Church Triumphant: 25 Men and Women who Gave Their Lives to Christ will be released on Easter Sunday. Starting next week, it will be available for preorder on Amazon, Smashwords, iTunes, and other ebook stores. Stay tuned for links when I upload it.

Also, take a moment to sign up for my new e-newsletter. Every time a new article is posted, you will get an email. Email subscribers will also get special offers on this and all upcoming ebooks.

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Ebooks coming

If you enjoyed my saint biographies, I have good news for you. I’m planning to release a collection of 20 saint biographies in ebook form. I’m going to add to the ones I have written already and write several new ones. I don’t have a title. Feel free to suggest one in the comment section. I’m aiming to release it during Lent this year.

I’m also planning to published a second ebook collecting the articles I have written on SSPX. That should be published by the middle of the year.

Stay tuned for more updates, including covers.

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Chasing Liberty: a Review – Part 1

Chasing Liberty by Theresa Linden

Chasing Liberty by Theresa Linden

Note: I received an advanced reader’s copy of this book from the author for this review.

This is part one of a two-part review of Theresa Linden‘s new book Chasing Liberty. Part 1 will take a look at the religious aspects of Chasing Liberty. Part 2 will examine the overall writing and will be published on my writing blog.

Book Description

Liberty 554-062466-84 of Aldonia lives in a responsible society that cares for the earth and everyone on it. They have learned to balance resource consumption with replacement initiatives, unavoidable pollution with clean-environment efforts. Science ensures that every baby born is healthy. The government ensures that every baby born is needed. All are cared for, taught, and given a specific duty to perform, their unique contribution to society. Why is Liberty so unsatisfied?

In less than two weeks, Liberty must begin her vocation. Every girl in Aldonia wishes she had Liberty’s vocation. Liberty would rather flee from Aldonia and live on her own, independent of the all-controlling government, the Regimen Custodia Terra. The high electrical Boundary Fence crushes any thought of escape. The ID implant imbedded in her hand makes it impossible to hide. She has no choice but to submit. Liberty is slated to be a Breeder.

As vocation day draws near, a man with an obsession for Liberty attacks her and injects her with a drug. She’s about to lose consciousness when someone comes to her rescue, a man in a mottled cape and dark glasses. She wakes in an underground facility where people watch over Aldonia with an array of monitors and surveillance equipment. These people are full of secrets, but she discovers one thing: they rescue a man scheduled for re-education. They rescued him. They can rescue her.

Now for the Review

Theresa has skillfully constructed a world that is a combination of George Orwell’s 1984 and Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World. In this future possible, the building blocks of society have been purged from common knowledge. A one world government teaches the people that such ancient ideas as “family”, “God”, and “free-will” are evil and lead to disaster and ruin. Theresa said that she based her novel on what she read in the news headlines and I’m afraid she’s right. We live in a society that is trying to undermine the traditional family structure and trivialize faith and religion. In the world of the Regimen, science has replaced religion.

The main character of the story, Liberty 554-062466-84, has been raised in a Godless society, but still feels a strange stirring in her soul. When she’s troubled or worried, she often feels the comforting presence of her “Friend”. It seems that at least one or two other characters share her yearning for something more. That leads me to something I just read a couple of days ago.

In 1969, Fr. Joseph Ratzinger (the future Pope Benedict XVI) gave a series of talks in the future of Catholicism that were later compiled and published in a book entitled Faith and the Future. I came upon this quote after finishing Chasing Liberty:

Men in a totally planned world will find themselves unspeakably lonely. If they have completely lost sight of God, they will feel the whole horror of their poverty. Then they will discover the little flock of believers as something wholly new. They will discover it as a hope that is meant for them, an answer for which they have always been searching in secret.

In the world of Chasing Liberty, the citizens of the Regimen fill their lives with entertainment, so they can no longer hear God calling to them. It’s sad to say, but that is true of today’s culture and it will only get worse. Pope Benedict’s words are coming true in front of our eyes.

Conclusions of Part 1

Overall, Chasing Liberty stands as a warning of what will surely come to pass if we do not change and pray. The family will be destroyed and children will eventually become a product of the State. Religion will be replaced with science and the worship of nature. Free-will will be replaced by State designated vocations.

I will give my final recommendation and rating in part 2.

Stayed tuned for part 2.

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Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

I would like to wish all of my readers a Very Merry Christmas and a Holy and Happy New Year. You are all in my prayers as we near a new year. May this be a time of peace and holiness for each of you. Be sure to check out my Christmas story Silent Night, Holy Night.

God Bless,

John Paul Wohlscheid

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Cardinal Dolan Does It Again

DolanObamaSome of you may remember that during that last conclave, I posted an article entitled Cardinal Dolan, the Man Who Must Never be Pope. I’m sure than many people thought I was to hard on the happy-go-lucky cardinal from New York. However, several things have come to my attention recently, which proved to me I was right.

First, there is the news that the upcoming New York’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade will be the first to allow openly homosexual groups and Cardinal Dolan will be the parade’s grand marshal. When this news came out, there was a giant backlash from Catholics who were confused and angered that a leading member of that Catholic Church would be involved in any thing.like this. Dolan replied to this by basically saying homosexuals are God’s children and should be allowed to identify themselves as such, besides it as the Parade Planning Committee’s idea, not his. This a cop-out and a chance for Dolan to show how accepting and politically correct he is, while letting people know that homosexuals should be accepted and not judged. I guess he forgot about Sodom and Gomorrah.

Second, the canonization process of Venerable Archbishop Sheen had been put on hold indefinitely. Why? Because the Archdiocese of New York refused to turn Sheen’s body over to his home diocese of Peoria. WHAT? From what I read, Bishop Jenky of Peoria expected Sheen to be canonized as early as next year. But now that’s out the window. Sheen was arguable the founder of televangelism and would have been the perfect patron saint of the new forms of internet evangelization. If this was a decision made by one of Dolan’s subordinate, why didn’t change the ruling (or whatever it was) and release Sheen’s body? Since he didn’t, there must be a reason he doesn’t want Sheen canonized and I can figure out why.

Lastly, in June South African priest Fr. Justin Wylie was removed from his parish and sent back to South Africa. On top of that a disciplinary complaint was filed against him in his home diocese. I’m sure this is something only a bishop or cardinal can do. Now his former parish, Holy Innocents Church, is in danger of being closed down. It’s also the only church in New York offering the Latin Mass. What did Fr. Wylie do to get his shipped home? He dared to complain in a homily about how Catholic who love the Latin Mass are persecuted and mistreated. You can read his sermon below. Does this sound like a good reason to send a priest back to South Africa? In fact, I heard that Fr. Wylie’s new parish is in such bad shape that he is forced to live in the church’s sacristy. The parish has done through five priests in the last couple of years. Keep Fr. Wylie in your prayers. Dolan has a history of persecution priests in his diocese who love the Latin Mass or try to defend the Church from liberalism.

Dear friends – and mark well that I speak to you now from the prophetic heart of my sacerdotal paternity – Dom Prosper Gueranger has something important to say also about threes. Hear it well:

“[T]he sacraments, being visible signs, are an additional bond of unity between the members of the Church: we say additional, because these members have the two other strong links of union – submission to Peter and to the pastors sent by him and profession of the same faith. The Holy Ghost tells us, in the sacred Volume, that a threefold chord is not easily broken [Eccles. Iv 12]. Now we have such a one, and it keeps us in the glorious unity of the Church: hierarchy, dogma, and sacraments, all contribute to make us one Body. Everywhere, from north to south, and from east to west, the sacraments testify to the fraternity that exists amongst us; by them we know each other, no matter in what part of the globe we may be, and by the same we are known by heretics and infidels. These divine sacraments are the same in every country, how much soever the liturgical formulae of their administration may differ; they are the same in the graces they produce, they are the same in the signs whereby grace is produced – in a word, they are the same in all the essentials” (pp. 228-9).

Dom Gueranger writes these words for us under his entry for precisely this Fourth Sunday after Easter, when in this parish, as I understand, you will meet to discuss a path forward for the precarious existence of your own worshipping community. Will this be the path Christ charts or will we make of ourselves instruments of the evil one for division and derision? The test of this, as in all things, is charity. Deus caritas est; et ubi caritas est vera, Deus ibi est. Where there is a breakdown of charity, there also is the spirit of the antichrist. I urge you, therefore, to be obedient and to be charitable with your legitimate superiors in all this, as well as with each other. Be firm and clear, also, and just; however, let charity always be the litmus test of whom it is you serve.

Allow me to say, first of all, that it has been my great privilege to serve this community during my term in New York. I have benefitted and learned so much from you and from your piety and fidelity, vivacity and zeal. I refer to all of you, now – you know who you are, I hope, from the love that I bear for you. Some I know better than others, through service at the altar – your acolytes and MCs; others I have loved with my voice and through my ears (like the organists and choir); others yet through my eyes, such as those who keep the church so beautiful, restored and adorned with flowers; others yet I bear with love, such as those who source and restore such magnificent vestments; many of you are known to me in the intimacy of the confessional or through the rich friendship of spiritual direction: upon all of you I gaze from this pulpit with a father’s love and admiration. Yet I must make my own the words of our Blessed Lord when I tell you that my heart breaks with pity to behold those who seem to be as though sheep without a shepherd.

Allow me to explain. When I first came to New York, I marveled at the freedom traditional Catholics had always enjoyed in New York. When the Mass of the Ages seemed everywhere in the world effectively to have been banned, here in New York it found a home. “What freedom!” I thought, “What magnanimity from the pastors of the Church here in this place!” Now, however, with the benefit of time and deeper understanding, I see the superficiality of this first appreciation. Indeed, such a conclusion would be more befitting the 1980s and 1990s when Catholic laypeople were organizing such masses here and there on an ad hoc basis. First at St. Agnes, I believe, and then elsewhere, “homes” were found for such communities … and this indeed did give for their members here a happier prospect than in many parts of the world. But in a post-Summorum Pontificum Church, after Pope Benedict courageously proclaimed that the extraordinary form of the liturgy pertains equally to the fulness of the Roman rite, this approach cannot any more, I think, be characterised as true magnanimity.

As I said: during the dark days of prohibition, New York seemed to be a happy place to be for you because of the indult-masses at places like St. Agnes, but in the fresh juridical freedom Summorum Pontificum brings, New York has become, in my view, a less felicitous place for traditional Catholics: because nothing is structured, nothing acknowledged. Who takes responsibility for you pastorally?

Pastores dabo vobis, the Lord promises Jeremiah: I will give you shepherds!  Fundamentally – and this is something about which I urge you to think well and pray much about – as a priest, I have to say: I worry about the situation of traditional Catholics in the Archdiocese. Yes, the archdiocese ‘permits’ a traditional mass here or there — but responsibility for the matter continues to rest upon the initiative and resourcefulness of the laity, who with enormous difficulty have to source priests hither and thither as though we were seemingly still living in Reformation England or Cromwellian Ireland. Isn’t it high time for the Church to take pastoral responsibility also for these sheep? Do they not deserve a shepherd? a parish? or at least some sense of juridical security? What happens to you when the parish you are harbouring in closes its doors?

What will become of the priestly vocations aplenty I see in these numerous young men of such quality as we have in abundance serving here at Holy Innocents, St. Agnes and elsewhere – remaining as they do at the mercy (and sometimes, caprice) of ‘landlords’ who, for one reason or another, ‘permit’ their presence in their parishes? Doors everywhere seem closing to them. Our Saviour has closed its doors to them. St. Agnes, for its part, guards its doors vigilantly to make sure they don’t enter the building 5 minutes too early or don’t overstay their welcome by 5 minutes more. Now, it seems, the doors of Holy Innocents will be closed to them, too. Taken together, this is, in my view, a clear instance of exclusion: an injustice which you should bring to the attention of your shepherd, I think. You are fully-fledged members of the baptised Faithful, for heaven’s sake: why are you scurrying about like ecclesiastical scavengers, hoping for a scrap or two to fall from the table for your very existence? The precariousness of your community cannot hinge on a church building being available to you as though you were a mere sodality or guild. The days of renting space in hotels and the like must surely be over. You are not schismatics! Are you schismatics?

Whatever happens to Holy Innocents – and this will be the decision of your chief-shepherd here, who will base his decision on more information than any of us has at his or her disposal – you need to assert that you belong to the Church as fully as any other community. You have found a home here, largely through your own hard work and perseverence: no good shepherd could dispossess you of your home without providing safety and good pasture elsewhere. Parishioners of a Novus ordo parish closure might easily find another ‘home’ nearby; but what of you? You have a right to find the Mass (and not only on Sundays); and not only the Mass, but the other sacraments and rites of the Church. Closing this parish is more akin to closing a linguistic parish or a Oriental rite parish. What becomes of you?

No longer, I say, should you think of yourselves as squatters in the mighty edifice of Holy Church, nor should you find yourselves turned out like squatters. Shepherds must needs make difficult decisions, such as the erection or suppression of parishes – that is their onerous duty and in this they must have our obedience, charity and prayer: but never should they throw open the sheep-fold and allow the uncertain dispersion of their sheep into a world full of wolves. Charity, of course, is a two-way street.

Dolan is damaging the image of the Church by feeding the world conflicting messages about Church teaching. He also works hard to force traditional Catholic to merge into the mainstream or leave for splinter groups, like SSPX. Please pray for Dolan’s conversion before he causes too much damage.

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Medjugorje Scandals: the Fake Bishop

The Medjugorje “apparition” is one of the biggest and fastest growing phenomenons in the Catholic Church and beyond. In some places, Medjugorje is more widely known than Fatima or Lourdes. However, just because it is popular doesn’t mean its true. In fact, there are problems and scandals surrounding the Medjugorje “apparition”. The following is just one of many.

On October 5, 1997, the sacrament of Confirmation was celebrated at the parish church of Capljina in Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, the minister was not the Bishop of Mostar-Duvno, Bishop Ratko Peric. Instead the “celebrant” was an unnamed man who spoke only German. The man did not give his name and the Franciscans who run the parish did not introduce him. According to a newspaper report, he only described himself by saying “I come to you from a distant yet beautiful country. My homeland is more than a 1,000 miles from your lovely country and your beautiful town.”

Before I go further, I need to tell you some quick background history. In June of 1975, Pope Paul VI issued the decree Romanis pontificibus, which ordered the Franciscans in Bosnia and Herzegovina to hand over half of the parishes they administered to diocesan priests. They refused. In fact, they still refuse. The Franciscans in Bosnia and Herzegovina are so disobedient that their province lost its authority and the General of the Order rules it directly. Furthermore, that province is not allowed to take part in the election of the General. The parish where this event (I don’t know what else to call it) took place was one of parishes that the Franciscans refused to give up. In fact, the front door were bricked up so the diocesan priests could not enter.

Now to talk about how problematic this event was. First off, a bishop can only perform the duties of his office in another diocese when the bishop of that diocese gives him permission to do so (Canon 390). For example, several years ago, far-Left retired Bishop Gumbleton was going to speak at a Catholic Church in the Diocese of Marquette. However, when the bishop of that diocese, Bishop Sample (who is now Archbishop of Portland, Oregon), heard about this he forbade Gumbleton from speak in his diocese. Gumbleton was forced to use a Protestant church as a venue instead (which was more suitable for him anyway). According an article in a local newspaper Slobodna Dalmacija, Bishop Peric did not give permission for this event in Capljina.

Secondly, because the man did not give his name and the Franciscans did not introduce him, there was no way for the participants to know if he truly was a bishop. Luckily, Bishop Peric investigated. What he found was terrible. The supposed bishop turned out to be an Old Catholic seminarian named Srecko Franjo Novak. (For those who don’t know, the Old Catholic Church broke off from the Catholic Church after Vatican I because they did not agree with the doctrine of papal infallibility.) Novak claimed he had been consecrated an Old Catholic bishop, however his superiors told Bishop Peric that they had found him unfit and only ordained him to the diaconate. In effect, there was no sacrament because the person who pretended to confer it did not have the faculties or permission to do so.

To conclude, disobedient Franciscans used a church, that they refused to allow diocesan priests to enter, to told an event where a fake bishop pretended to confer the sacrament of Confirmation. What does this have to do with Medjugorje? Simply put, this is an example of the fruits of Medjugorje. Obviously, if Our Lady was truly appearing at Medjugorje, this nonsense would not be happening. Both Bishop Peric and his predecessor investigated Medjugorje and condemned it. The disobedient Franciscans proceeded to promote it, even going so far as to recruit an apostate seminarian to act as a bishop for them and give them an air of legitimacy. What could possibly be wrong with this picture?

For more information on this story and other problems with Medjugorje, I recommend reading the late Michael Davies book Medjugorje after Twenty-One Years. I have also posted it on the Resources page.

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