Monday, December 3, 2018

Guadalupe All Day! Day 8 of our Mexico Pilgrimage

by Steve Ray on December 3, 2018

Today is the pinnacle of our pilgrimage through Mexico. We started in the outlying areas learning the history, culture, and backdrop for the Catholic heritage of Mexico. We learned of the first Spanish missionaries who came, the first baptisms and the Mass conversions due to Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Our guide Roberto is a wealth of knowledge, a devout Catholic and an amazing historian. He has been able to clearly relay the history of Mexico and the foundations of the Catholic Church here with great clarity and enthusiasm.

Now today, everything culminates with a visit to Our Lady of Guadalupe, which is the most visited Catholic shrine in the world. Over 20,000,000 people come to visit Guadalupe each year. Even as we’re driving in the streets today and the highways we see processions of people walking and riding bikes and taking buses to be at Guadalupe for December 12.

We started the day by going straight to see the Tilma with the image of Our Lady before the crowds arrived. What an amazing time — I could see it in the faces of the pilgrims.

Then Roberto took us on a tour of the whole shrine. We had Mass in front of the Tilma with Mary’s image. Fr. James Conlon’s homily is here.

Then a “delicioso” lunch just outside the shrine. Then everyone had the rest of the afternoon free to pray, explore and enjoy Guadalupe! Enjoy!

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SEX ABUSE SCANDALS CATHOLIC, PROTESTANT AND SECULAR:

Article by Dave Armstrong “Scandalous Sexual Misconduct Committed by Protestant Clergy” and it’s original source.

I kept hearing about all these scandals going on in the Catholic Church.  I would hear about scandals from the east coast to the west coast and even in Europe.   The secular press was relentless in making sure the public knew about all these scandals.  And my non-Catholic and Evangelical friends were more than happy to bring this up, the moment that they found out that I was Catholic.  I am hard on the Evangelicals because most of the criticisms were coming from the Evangelicals.  On the other hand there are some Evangelicals who are not this way; in fact they are very caring and understanding.  Here are the words of one Evangelical who in her humility didn’t have a need to trash the Catholic Church on the basis of scandals.  She wanted the truth to be known about the sexual abuse she experienced as an Evangelical.

  • “I am a survivor of 10 years of sexual abuse at the hands of my preacher father. I have now become an advocate for victims of abuse. For years I have been saying that when the full scope of the abuse within the evangelical church comes to light, the Catholics will pale in comparison. I have talked to thousands of abuse victims and it would shock you how many are preacher’s kids, missionary kids and kids who have grown up in evangelical homes. The problem with tracking these numbers is because the evangelicals don’t have the hierarchical system that the Catholics do. Abuse victims can’t take it ‘up the chain of command’ because so many of these churches have no accountability. I seriously warn evangelicals about gloating over the Catholic scandals because our day is coming and it isn’t going to be pretty when we see what has been swept under the rug for decades. God is cleaning his church and this is a day that I have long prayed for. May every pedophile and predator preacher be exposed and may our churches become safe havens for the brokenhearted.”

On another occasion a Baptist minister warned not to gloat because very soon the second shoe may fall and Evangelicals will have their own sex abuse scandals brought out in the open.   This minister saw the big picture and saw no need to throw dirt at the Catholic Church.

Why did the Catholic Church seemingly have this huge problem and other Christian and secular groups seemingly did not? I later found out that the Protestant arena had as large or larger problem with sex abuse among their clergy than the Catholic Church, according to the insurance companies that insure them.   And there was a much larger problem in the secular world.

When I was working at the post office I had an Evangelical colleague tell me how shocked he was about the sex abuse scandal going in the Catholic Church.  I was left to wonder why he was not shocked about the huge child sex abuse scandal in his own Baptist Church.   Apparently he was either unaware of it or was in denial of it.   For those who claim there is no problem, I would suggest that you go online to, Baptist sex abuse scandals.

Then there was my friend who attended Elm Brook Church, who was wondering, “What’s the big deal in the Catholic Church, why are these scandals happening?” She didn’t have long to wait, about six months after asking this, there was this child sex abuse scandal involving a youth minister in her own Elm Brook Church.  The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, November 5th, 1999 was quoted as saying “Any church — any organization — would have difficulty dealing with the overwhelming tragedy that has struck Elmbrook Church in Brookfield, where seven boys have said that youth minister Daniel Varga sexually abused them. As the investigation was beginning, Varga committed suicide.”

My compliments to the press, the Journal Sentinel, who I would say gave them very compassionate coverage.  From the secular press in general if this happened in the Catholic Church with their heavily non-Catholic bias, they would say “if only priests could marry,” as though this was the solution to the problem.   Where does this type of thinking come from?  It comes from articles on any number of anti-Catholic sites on the internet.  These articles allege that the reason for sexual abuse in the Catholic Church is forced celibacy.  Forced celibacy is not in the teachings or practices of the Catholic Church or in the Bible; it exists only in the minds of those who wish to believe it. Celibacy is in the teaching and practices of the Catholic Church and in the Bible.  The youth minister at Elmbrook was not involved in forced celibacy and yet, he was involved in a child sex abuse scandal.  He was married; why didn’t that prevent the problem?   I was left to wonder, if the youth minister at Elmbrook would not have committed suicide, would this child sex abuse scandal have even made it in the local press?…

…The information is out there, and the secular press is silent in its reporting of it.

  • “The Catholic Church Sex Abuse Stats: Father Jonathan Morris is a Roman Catholic priest in New York City and he is also a news contributor for Fox News Channel. In a recent news story, “Father Jonathon” stated that heavy media scrutiny forced the Catholic Church to open the books on how many sex abuse cases there have been. Since 1950, 13,000 credible accusations were brought against Catholic priests; this averages 228 cases per year.
  • Sex Abuse in Protestant Churches: Three insurance companies in the United States that provide liability coverage for 165,000 Protestant churches revealed data to the Associated Press that they typically receive 260 reports every year of children being sexually abused by Protestant clergy or other staff.

Some people are acting like modern day Pharisees pointing out the sin of others while not acknowledging their own sin.   “The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself, ‘O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity—greedy, dishonest, adulterous –or even like this tax collector.  I fast twice a week, and I pay tithe on my whole income’” (Lk 18:11-12).

They are busy confessing the sins of others rather than their own sinful scandals….

Click here for the whole Article by Dave Armstrong

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Walking tour of Mexico City starting with the magnificent Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is the oldest, largest and most important cathedral in Latin America. We had Mass here and Fr. James’ homily is here.

To demonstrate that Christianity conquers paganism, the cathedral was built atop the Great Aztec Temple where untold of thousands of humans were sacrificed. I gave my talk about this gruesome practice and compared it with abortion. I also made a point that the impulse for human sacrifice made it easy to lead the indigenous peoples to an understanding of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ and the Eucharist.

After an hour at the vast Mercado Market we visited the Church of the Holy Family to venerate the relics of the Cristero’s priest and martyr Blessed Miguel Pro and to learn his story. Evening was free.

TODAY’s EVENTS

STEVE’S TALK ON AZTECS, HUMAN SACRIFICE, ABORTION, EATING FLESH AND BLOOD AND THE GOSPEL

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