September 2012

Ireland Day 9: Farewells & Comments

by Steve Ray on September 30, 2012

Sad to say Good-bye but good to hear the joy and kind words from the pilgrims. This morning we all hugged, reminisced and said Good-bye until our next adventures together. Most of these folks have pledged to go to Lourdes and Fatima with us next September, and to England in 2014.

We also have trips to Poland, many to Israel (though trips for this year are already full), several to Rome and cruises to follow St. Paul. Join us on a future pilgrimage. Visit

Now that the group is gone, please pray for me. I am a “one-man show” here in Ireland for the next four nights giving the first ever Apologetics Conference in the history of Ireland. I will be giving the evening talks in St. Theresa’s Catholic Church in downtown Ireland.< /p>


Can’t bring people to Dublin without giving them some free time. Today everyone was free until 4 PM when we left for Mass. People scattered all over Dublin to see what they were interested in. Some firefighters with us went to see local fire stations, others jumped on the Hop On, Hop Off Tour Buses that hit all the highlights of Dublin.

Others went to tour the Guinness Brewery, churches, bookstores, art museums and more. Everyone ate at nice pubs and local restaurants. At 4:00 PM we took the bus to the oldest parish in Dublin named after St. Audeon. Then we went to a rousing evening of Irish music and dance. Very fun. 

The second video is the whole of Fr. Courtney’s final farewell homily. I hope it is clear enough since it was a bit echo-ey in the church. We will have one more video tomorrow as the group gives comments and thoughts on the pilgrimage and we all say Good-bye.




Like I said a week ago, this had to be a forgery if not a heretical document written by the gnostics back on the 4th century. Catholics should be prepared for repeated reports (assaults) like this.

Here is the article about the Vatican’s comments on the fake document suggesting that Jesus had a wife. 

By Naomi O’Leary


An ancient papyrus fragment which a Harvard scholar says contains the first recorded mention that Jesus may have had a wife is a fake, the Vatican said Friday.

“Substantial reasons would lead one to conclude that the papyrus is indeed a clumsy forgery,” the Vatican’s newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, said in an editorial by its editor, Gian Maria Vian. “In any case, it’s a fake.

Joining a highly charged academic debate over the authenticity of the text, written in ancient Egyptian Coptic, the newspaper published a lengthy analysis by expert Alberto Camplani of Rome’s La Sapienza university, outlining doubts about the manuscript and urging extreme caution.

The fragment, which reads “Jesus said to them, ‘My wife…'” was unveiled by Harvard Professor Karen King as a text from the 4th century at a congress of Coptic Studies in Rome last week.

Her study divided the academic community, with some hailing it as a landmark discovery while others rapidly expressed their doubts

“It’s really pretty unlikely that it’s authentic,” University of Durham Professor Francis Watson told Reuters after he published a paper arguing the words on the fragment were a rearrangement of phrases from a well known Coptic text.

Watson, who has previously worked on identifying forged gospels, said it was likely to be an ancient blank fragment that was written over in the 20th or 21st century by a forger seeking to make money.

Watson argues that the words on the fragment do not fit grammatically into a larger text.

“It’s possible to get hold of an old bit of unwritten-on papyrus and write some new stuff on it,” Watson said. “There is a market for fake antiquities throughout the Middle East … I would guess that in this case the motivation might have been a financial one.”

Academic debate 
Manuscript experts who heard King’s presentation quickly took to their blogs to express doubts, noting that the letters were clumsy, perhaps the script of someone unused to writing Coptic.

Writing from the conference, early Christian scholar Christian Askeland said specialists there were divided between two-thirds who were extremely skeptical, and one-third convinced the fragment was false.

“I have not met anyone who supports its authenticity,” Askeland wrote from a session of the Tenth International Congress of Coptic Studies, where King gave her paper.

In an email to Reuters after the conference ended and before the Vatican editorial, King said: “Whether, in the end, the fragment will be shown to be authentic is still to be finally determined, but the serious conversation among scholars has begun.”

During the conference King stressed that the fragment did not give “any evidence that Jesus was married, or not married” but that early Christians were talking about the possibility.

AnneMarie Luijendijk, associate professor of religion at Princeton University, said she concluded that the fragment was indeed an authentic, ancient text, written by a scribe in antiquity.

“We can see that by the way the ink is preserved on the papyrus and also the way the papyrus has faded and also the way the papyrus has become very fragmentary, which is actually in line with a lot of other papyri we have also from the New Testament,” Luijendijk told Reuters during the conference.

The idea that Jesus was married resurfaces regularly in popular culture, notably with the 2003 publication of Dan Brown’s best-seller “The Da Vinci Code,” which angered the Vatican because, among other things, it was based on the idea that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene and had children.

Christian tradition has long held that Jesus was not married and the Catholic Church, by far the largest in Christendom, says women cannot become priests because Christ chose only men as his apostles.


Beautiful Family, New One Has No Idea How Lucky He is!

September 29, 2012

My son and his wife Anna have marvelous kids (so does my Daughter Cindy and her husband Be). But I am featuring Jesse’s here because little Joseph Charles Francis Ray was just Andes to the family. Anna is sure glad he is out :-) He was 7 lbs. 15 oz. and was warmly greeted by […]

Read the full article →

Ireland Pilgrimage Day 7: St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Trinity College, Archbishop Brown, Oscar Wilde, Mass with Boy’s Choir and More

September 28, 2012

Great day – way more than I can fit on a few minutes of video. But everyone is having a great time and all is going superbly well. Today’s itinerary: Bus tour of Dublin, visit the Georgian Houses near Merrion Square, then the story and excerpts from Oscar Wilde by his unique statue in Merrion Square. […]

Read the full article →

“First Confession” the Hilarious Story of a Seven Year Old Irish Boy

September 27, 2012

Batt Burns is one of the premier story tellers of Ireland. He is our guide and has mesmerized us along the way. One evening he performed his one man show “Wisperings of Ireland.”  Part of this show was the enchanting and hilarious story of the seven year old boy going to his first confession with his older […]

Read the full article →

Ireland Day 6: From Kilkenny’s Magnificent Castle to Glendalough, Mass at St. Kevin’s & on to Dublin

September 27, 2012

One thing is for sure. We all love Ireland. We also have a profound gratitude for Ireland’s contributions through history to our Catholic faith. It is astounding.  Enjoy the videos for today. They start with my walk through early morning Kilkenny, a beautiful town with some of the oldest buildings in Ireland and the most […]

Read the full article →

Ireland Day 5: Early Walk thru Sneem, Blarney Castle & Stone, St. Patrick’s Cashel Rock, Killkenny

September 26, 2012

Another great day in the Emerald Isle. Far too much to relay though I want to give you all a feel for what we are experiencing here on this deeply historical, cultural and spiritual pilgrimage with the Rosary prayed, Mass at magnificent sites and meeting many locals and discussing the faith and learning their culture. […]

Read the full article →

Ireland 4: Fantastic Night of Irish Song & Dance – including our pilgrims!

September 26, 2012

The locals all showed up at the pub until way late to teach us to sing and dance. What a great evening with the talented yet simple towns folk.

Read the full article →

Ireland Day 4: Cathedral of Killarney, Ring of Kerry, Irish Dancing and Music and More

September 25, 2012

A tremendous day. Several said we’ve outdone ourselves. Mass at majestic Cathedral of St. Mary in Killarney followed by driving through the stunning Ring of Kerry along the Atlantic Coast and the lakes of Kerry. Dinner in Sneem and a rollicking evening with local musicians and dancers – and our group all joined in. There […]

Read the full article →

Ireland Day 3: Dunratty Castle, Mass at Adare’s Trinitarian Abbey, Drive thru Killarney to Magical Sneem

September 24, 2012

Enjoy another charmed day in the Emerald Isle with more shades of green than you’ve ever seen.

Read the full article →

Ireland Day 2: “My Ireland,” Shrine of Knock, Ballintubber Abbey, Galway Cathedral, Free Evening

September 23, 2012

My early morning hike through Galway Ireland before breakfast can be seen HERE. It has videos, pictures and an interactive map. Galway in the morning is gorgeous. Our second day of pilgrimage through Ireland began with Batt Burns, our local guide – who is far more than just a guide. He is primarily the premier […]

Read the full article →

“2016” to Air Sunday on Fox News

September 23, 2012

UPDATE: My apology for was now apparently incorrect information. Received the info while here in Ireland from what i thought was a reliable source. My apologies. Wish it had been try. — Looks that Fox News is going to air the documentary on the real Obama “2016”. What will our country look like in 2016, […]

Read the full article →

Ireland Pilgrimage Day 1: Arrival in Dublin, Mass at Congmacnoise, Drive to Galway

September 22, 2012

My hike through the outskirts of Dublin before the group arrived. With an interactive map, videos and pictures you can join me on the leisurely hike through some beautiful countryside. Ireland is a remarkably Catholic country that has overcome every obstacle and oppression. The people are generous of heart and friendly, the country beautiful, green […]

Read the full article →

Kill our Ambassador and we’ll send you another $6.3 Billion

September 22, 2012

These are pictures you will not see in the Obama media. Our US Ambassador to Libya being tortured and dragged through the streets before being murdered. This is our American Ambassador, J. Christopher Stevens, diplomat, father, husband, and American Citizen, being dragged through the streets of Benghazi, and President Obama does NOTHING! . . . […]

Read the full article →

Grandchild Number 10 Walks

September 21, 2012

Daniel Xavier Ray walked today. We were in India at the tomb of St. Francis Xavier in Goa when little Danny was born a year ago and I think that is how he got his name. Coaxed by his his dad (my son Jesse) and his 4 older brothers and sisters – he waked today. […]

Read the full article →