Get Up, and Get Moving....

An opportunity for people of serious and orthodox Catholic faith of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee to share the means to improve their own Churches.

Location: near Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Cynical at best.

Just saw the Michael J Fox ad. Something struck me...

"Wisconsin holds a special place in my heart, because it is the place where stem cell research was born."

Since they so dutifully avoid the more accurate, politically-loaded, troublesome word "embryonic", the assertion that of a fondness for where anything "was born" is cynical at best, evil at worst.

When it comes to the parties involved, I am inclined to believe either.


Saturday, October 28, 2006

A mass of mess, a mess of a "mass"

So, next week Call to Action is going to have a druid, womenpriest, naturist bongo drums service that it wants to call a "mass". No surprise there. And I guess we should be proud that a local gal-made-good will be the preacher. Again, no surprise there...we all saw that coming.

The better question is not how big Madame Vandenburg's cajones are, we know that already, it is how courageous and forthright the leader of the Archdiocese of Milquetoast will be?

Since Madame Chancelloress may well be at the Mother Earth Mass, I offer the follow notes to His Excellency from the Catholic Church's Code of Canon Law:

Can. 908 Catholic priests are forbidden to concelebrate the Eucharist with priests or ministers of Churches or ecclesial communities which are not in full communion with the catholic Church.

Can. 915 Those upon whom the penalty of excommunication or interdict has been imposed or declared, and others who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to holy communion.

Can. 1365 One who is guilty of prohibited participation in religious rites is to be punished with a just penalty.

Can. 1369 A person is to be punished with a just penalty, who, at a public event or assembly, or in a published writing, or by otherwise using the means of social communication, utters blasphemy, or gravely harms public morals, or rails at or excites hatred of or contempt for religion or the Church.

Just penalty? The leadership in this archdiocese seems to have about as much understanding of, or use for, the phrase "just penalty" as it does for "good liturgy". Zippo, nada, nunca, nothin'!

I won't be able to be there (my therapist recommends against going to these types of events ,as well as driving nails into my own eyeballs), but if any of you decide to sneak in, please take your camera phones and get pictures of our priests and parish lay ministers who participate. I would love to share them! I trust that Frs. Cooper and Mich might be there.


Friday, October 27, 2006

Is It An October Surprise? Or Not?

A Democratic Senate Candidate writes child porn?

That's not it....

A Hollywood Star underestimates American intelligence?

Nothing new in that....

A priest from Milwaukee sides with the Gay lobby against his own archbishop?

Getting warmer....

That same Archbishop will do absolutely nothing, let me write that again, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about it!

But really, is that a surprise at all anymore?

Fr. Bryan "just say no" Massinmale reports of Archbishop Dolan that "In fact, he just spoke to me this afternoon (Thursday) and was talking about me speaking at some other engagements here in the archdiocese." How could that be? Either one of the two is lying, or one of them says one thing to good Catholics or when in front of other bishops, while saying something completely different to a culprit priest. You be the judge.

Educational reference for Fr. Massinmale:

Do you recall the Catechism of the Catholic Church? (Some Catholics have read it.) Paragraph #2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered." They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

Next, let's move on to the intellectual brilliance of the renowned Fr. Dave "Women's Ordination" Cooper. With his normal incisive use of logic he writes:

I thought it important to share his [Fr. Massinmale's] opinion with all of you. Our Catholic Bishops share the opposite opinion and you will find clear statements of that in the inserts on "Political Responsibility" that are being inserted each week. Parishioners had asked if "we priests" were going to say anything about the controversy arising out of the November Referendum.

So, the bishops make "clear statements" but you still choose moral equivocation.
Controversy itself is caused by you.
People ask your opinion, and you are unable to form your own response.

All Fr. Cooper proves about himself is that either he has a motive that itself can't be expressed in clear statements, or he can be led astray by any foolish groupthink that comes along.

Speaking of foolish groupthink, that inevitably brings us to the Milwaukee Priest Alliance. They spout off about Massinmale's article this way: "We share his well-founded fear that the amendment may be construed to deny rights and services, including health care, not only to those in civil unions but many other citizens of Wisconsin as well, irrespective of their marital status."

First, where are the proofs for a "well-founded fear"? No such foundational proofs exist in his original column. So essentially the groupthinkers take a thin premise and call it "well-founded." That's brilliant, isn't it?

Second, it seems that if you want to speak to some issue, or issues, that are pressing "irrespective of their marital status" then a referendum about marriage itself is really not your concern is it? In fact, you even go so far as to say that "our pastoral experience tells us that the prospect of gay unions is not a chief cause of marital instability and family dissolution. Marriage and family are more at risk from more immediate challenges "problems that can and should be addressed by candidates."

So, if "gay unions" remain a cause, if only secondary, what really is your objection to at least this step. Isn't marriage so important that a step that eliminates even secondary causes is worth taking?

All in all, Frs. Massinmale, Cooper and the Groupthink Alliance all use false logic to argue against the referendum. So why make the argument at all? To protect concomitant rights like access to medical care, hospital visitation or inheritances? Sorry, Fr. Bryan, these can be, and are protected by other statutes.

So there must be some other motive behind all this false logic and false argumentation. So, is it an October surprise to many of us faithful Catholics that Frs. Massinmale, Cooper, and members of the Groupthink Alliance have some motivation about the issue of "gay marriage"? It seems to be a logical questions to ask. As the great poet once wrote....Thou Doth Protest Too Much!

So, is it not logical to assume that the letter about optional celibacy needs a second layer of rule/law changes to have direct impact on at least some portion of the priests of Milwaukee.

As I said at the top; you be the judge. That's plenty for today.


Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The Descent of Dissent? We can only hope!

Wow, two postings in one day!

Dad29 reports that the pro-Gay (marriage) diatribe of Fr. Bryan Massingale scheduled for tonight at St. John Vianney Congregational Reductionist Church in Brookfield was abruptly cancelled.

Here are some possible explanations:

1. The check for the speaking fee was not ready. No check, no dissent.
2. Someone on south Lake Drive grew a spine and took some action. (What orthodox priest at the Cousins Center calls St. John Vianney his home parish?)
3. Fr. Massingale got a better offer from St. Matthias, St. Sebastian, Our Lady of Lourdes, etc. etc., etc.
4. Someone had a date tonight.

You be the judge.


A possible vision of the future.

As mentioned previously, the archepiscobile (possible Archbishops for those that support women deacons) Thomas Paprocki is a good man from the flat land to the south. Last week he was in Milwaukee to preside at the White Mass for doctors and nurses at the Basilica of St. Josaphat (I wonder why they avoid the Cathedral? LOL!)

Part of his homily is well worth sharing not just with doctors, but consider what it might mean if directed at priests. (Simply put, Bishop Paprocki will not be invited to the next Alliance meeting.)

An excerpt from Bishop Paprocki's homily (insert "priesthood" for medicine):

Medicine is an honorable profession. It seeks to cure, heal and restore human beings to health. It is honorable because its ultimate goal is to provide good health for each and every single person. The goal is for you to work yourself out of a job, yet we all know that will never happen, at least not in our lifetimes.

The pressures of the developing medical field can leave us over-worked, beleaguered, and exasperated. However, we need to return to the vision that brought you to study the healing sciences. We need to recover our dream. As we gather together in this great Basilica of St. Josaphat, our dreams need to be nourished by a clear focus of our time and trust.

You sacrifice yourselves for patients. There are occasions when you are robbed of sleep; the times of hastily changed plans to respond to someone in need; the emergency calls that make your hearts pound as you assess the situation. You sacrifice as Christ sacrificed. You pour out yourselves for the sake of your patients; Christ poured himself out for the sake of the kingdom of God.

The dream that brought you to the study of medicine, the increasingly difficult situations you find yourselves in, centering yourselves on Christ and the life he offers, and keeping this all in balance requires what our Gospel calls wisdom.

And then in a refreshing episcopal approach to leadership, bluntness!

[My pharmacist father] didn't have to worry about the Governor of the State of Illinois trying to violate his rights of conscience and force him to fill prescriptions for the so-called "morning after pill," "emergency contraception," and other abortifacients.

Don't you wish.....


P.S. Who knew that anything in Milwaukee Magazine would cause such a theological debate?

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

How quickly they catch up.

First, WISN Channel 12 offers its Sunday night hit piece. (Congratulations Maureen on being the voice of the opposition!)

Then, Milwaukee magazine has an odd collection of quotes, details, and nice pictures and tried to make it out to be an article about a crisis. The only crisis that article brings to light is in the area of good, investigative journalism. (Note the number of possible auxiliaries who were interviewed.)

Finally, the local rag finally catches up to what you and I have known for months. (And what the heck makes Fr. Joseph Baran and expert on episcopal appointments? Who is Fr. Joseph Baran?)

Oh well, all Tom Heinen needed to do was ask....

In te last thread, Andrew asked about possible replacements for Archbishop Dolan. While I believe that there is more that works against Dolan going to NYC than going for it, speculation is fun. Think of it as starting our Christmas list early.

So, not really predictions, just wishful thinking or some obvious names:

Thomas Paprocki, Chicago
Robert Morlino, Madison
David Zubick, Green Bay
Earl Boyea, Detroit
Blase Cupich, Rapid City

Just some food for wishful thoughts.


Monday, October 16, 2006

Baltimore? Who cares when the Big Apple is calling....

More on the speculation about the future of our own Archbishop Timothy Michael Dolan. (Please recognize that every story means less attention is paid to the real issues that confront us locally. Not that we would notice the difference from the attention being paid up to this point.)

WCBS-TV in NYC (Has a video story..."Well liked by his priests"? Has that priest heard about Frs. Cooper, Mich and the rest of the Alliance?)

The New York Post (NYC's non-elitist, other newspaper. No snobbery, that means that no priest in Milwaukee reads it.)

Since I know that members of the Cousins Center staff, as ineffective as they are otherwise, occasionally read my humble little musings, please pass this observation on: Your Excellency, remember that the obvious choice is rarely, if ever, the winning choice or even the best choice! We all learned that at our first homecoming dance (I know, you and your friends were in seminaries and never learned those real life lessons).

Your Excellency, saw you on Channel 12 last night. Seems that Milwaukee Magazine is throwing the first brushback pitch of your tenure. Can you handle it? Is the Dolan honeymoon over? Will the rest of media follow suit? (Sorry, no more Mike Gousha giving you 30 minute lovefests over at channel 4. Better get madame spokeswomen working on peddling more puff pieces. Will you go to St. Louis if the Cardinals make the series? That might get a mention.)

Sir, if you loose the Milwaukee media suck-ups in just 4 years, do you really think that you can handle the New York media for the remaining 18-23 years or your careerism? Style fades, it will take substance to last.

Time will tell.


Sunday, October 15, 2006

Those irritating coincidences.

Remember back in the salad days of our enamorment with Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan? Oh, it seems like we were so young and headstrong, but we were really just naive and foolish. You would think it was decades ago, but it seems like just a year or two.

Now, recall those warm feelings we all had when it was believed that the unspoken subtext of His Excellency's first attempt at a "Blue Ribbon Commission" to reform the seminary was actually to establish some orthodoxy there. What shall we call the Pakenham Commission...oh yeah. the Do-Nothing Commission. In all too typical fashion, the Archbishop went along just to get along. Like teenagers a week after the Homecoming Dance, we were crushed.

Then, a few months later, the reigning man at the Archdiocese of Milquetoast started to tease us again. A "second commission" had to be called together to redo the failed efforts of the Pakenham pollywogs. Should we have gotten our hopes up? Like fools, we did.

Yea, St. Francis Seminary was gutted of it most problematic aspects, the academic efforts, but our seminarians were sent to an equally problematic Sacred Heart School of Theology.

Tucked into the details of this faux effort at episcopal oversight and reform, was the fact that the empty college portion of St. Francis Seminary, formerly located on the trendy east side of Milwaukee (near all the good bars, coffee houses, and parks), would be closed and whatever students could be found, would attend St. Joseph College Seminary at Loyola University of Chicago. While it should have been anticipated that even the Jesuits could cancel out the effort of Cardinal Francis George, such anticipation is seemingly not within the grasp of an archbishop looking to relocate to the Chicago area (or any other more significant major metropolitan see than Milwaukee).

Well, just to slap the face of those of us who had those once childlike hopes for proper reform...the school that His Excellency chose to form his college level seminarians is proving its worth, and the Archdiocese's passive acceptance shows the lack of conviction that was present from the start.

Here is the headline to be aware of: Abortion Provided to Speak at Loyola. I wonder if the Very Reverend Michael Witczak will require the Milwaukee seminarians to attend. Certainly they need to be indoctrinated in the issues presented in the Women's Studies department. Note that most of the representations of students and what is "well-rounded" at the pre-fixed St. Francis Seminary, were women.

Conclusion: Since there are clearly better choices to have been made, Archbishop Dolan must have had his own agenda in sending college seminarians to Chicago.


Thursday, October 12, 2006

Out in front by three lengths, but is he a dark horse?

Hi all.

Yesterday, an anonymous poster offered this in a comment to a previous thread:

I work at the Central Offices and can tell you, based on what I know... I also heard that the Archbishop "was hurt and disappointed" when a request for an auxiliary was denied. But, the evidence points to CF being the front runner, and I have that on five solid sources.

Very interesting! For the unaccustomed, "Central Offices" refers to the soon to be defunct Archbishop (Cover for pedophile Widera) Cousins Catholic Center. "CF" as frontrunner for auxiliary bishop refers to Fr. Curt Frederick, the present Vicar for Clergy of the archdiocese.

For the employee, please do share more...any reason being rumored about for why an initial request was denied? Wrong person (too young, too old, too LIBERAL)? Wrong time (will there be a different Archbishop in this town on the horizon)?

Can you share names or info about your solid sources?

Always looking for more.


Wednesday, October 11, 2006

What is the Spanish word for "tidbits"?

Did a Google search for more insights about Fr. Norberto Sandoval.

When he was ordained, the Catholic Herald had a profile on him. Some things that jump out at me, but I do not know what they really mean...

His collection of Coca-Cola memorabilia "now covers the walls, shelves and even the bed (with a Coca Cola bedspread) in his seminary room." Almost as good as the oddball a few years ago who had a collection of teddy bears...these are men we can look up to aren't they?

"When not working, Sandoval was a regular on the local nightclub scene, dancing and socializing with friends." What clubs does he go to now?

"His biggest challenge, he described, was learning English." Does he expect this of his non-English speaking parishioners?

"He also has a special concern for people suffering from HIV and AIDS." OK, I ask again, what clubs he is frequenting these days?

"He knows that Coca-Cola will always be part of his life — he tried unsuccessfully to give it up for Lent." Oh, there's a confidence builder for a priest...can't stick to a commitment of sacrifice.

Just some food for thought for today.


Sunday, October 08, 2006

Sunday, but who said no mail.

Four issues related to getting e-mail from readers of my humble little blog:

1) Don't be afraid to offer comments via the "Comments" link at the bottom of each posting. Let everyone see what you have to say.

2) As regards last week's e-mail from "Marcus" predicting announcements of a new parish merger on the north side of Milwaukee and, more interestingly, that a new auxiliary bishop would be announced. Sorry, it seems both were off base, at least for now. As I noted, I have heard rumblings about the first and now fears about the second.

3) If you are a priest of this diocese and you want to send me a nasty e-mail about how unfair I am towards the Priests Alliance, and that I should not be making public statements on my blog, two pieces of advice: A) If you want to say you are a priest, and then not sign your message, I suggest not using a e-mail account that can easily be Googled...ask yourself, where have you used it in connection with your own name? B) I will stop writing blog messages about the Alliance if they stop writings letters. Deal?

4) Below is a message from a good person who wishes to remain anonymous. I will offer comment later this week, but thought I would open it up for initial observations from anyone....What should a good parish try to do when a priest (in this case an associate pastor) takes things down the path of destruction.

Bye all.


Dear Mike,

I wonder if you could please help the parishioners of the combined parishes of St. John Kanty, St. Helen's and St. Alexander on the southside. Fr. Norberto Sandoval, a newly ordained priest, is trying to turn our parishes into political action committees in support of illegal immigrants. He is sponsoring a talk called, "Justice for Immigrants-An Educational Forum" in conjunction with the Office of Catholic Social Action and the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

These old parishes, founded by legal immigrants, are now being inundated with Fr. Sandoval's liberation theology. While most parishioners support immigrants, they understand that Pope John Paul II also said that the accepting country's laws must be followed. The older parishioners don't want to say anything.

These parishes recently suspended religious education because a DRE resigned. There have been many staff resignations. Additionally, he has created a rift between Latino and Anglo parishioners by conducting a Spanish-only mass. Instead of spending time with the religious education students or older parishioners, he is focusing his energies in the political arena. He took part in the illegal immigrant marches last spring. He did not meet students in the religious education program and avoids talking to anglo parishioners. He has alienated older Polish Catholics by covering up their icons with Hispanic ones.

We don't know what kind of training he received and who is encouraging him. The parishioners have tried to write letters to the Archdiocese to no avail. Maybe if you bring this up there will be some action. Thank you so much. Please keep my identity anonymous.

Concerned citizens of the tri-parishes of St. Alexander's, St. Helen's and St. John Kanty

Ideas anyone?

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall.

This was in today's inbox from "MF" (and you really do need to learn how to post comments):

Dear Mike,

Interesting blog . . . I would like to see Dolan promoted out of here. Would rather see him get Baltimore (less prestigious than New York or Chicago), besides I want BURKE in Chicago!

I hope and pray that if Dolan is leaving he doesn't saddle us with another bad auxiliary. Frederick would be a DISASTER. I cannot; however, share your enthusiasm for Hartmann. Are you related to him? We were parishioners at Christ King when he was first ordained. While he was reverent in his motions on the Altar, I am always suspicious of a priest who goes incognito to a bar.

with faith and prayers, MF

Plenty that could be said. I want to focus on the last part. No, not a relative. What kind of a bar have you seen him going into? Presuming it is your everyday, ordinary tavern, I really can't fault a priest for going into a bar. Incognito? Some would complain if priests went into bars in habit; some do complain if they go incognito. So long as it is a respectable establishment, and the priest doesn't go in nightly...why not? I'd prefer incognito in a bar to watch a game with friends compared to a whole lot of the other options.

So, today's topic: Priests going into bars? Pro or Con....discuss.


Monday, October 02, 2006


Hi all.

The mailbox today includes this message from "Marcus":

Two items that will get announced later this week that relate to your September 28th comments:

Kurt Fredricks (@ 70 to 1) is the new bishop while retaining his positin as vicar for priests.

Four north side parishes will be merged and one new parish will be formed.


The four parish thing on the north[west] side his been in the works for a while.

As for "Kurt Fredricks", aka Fr. Curt Frederick: plausible, but what is the evidence for his being the man, and now being the time?

As for some commentary.....

Fr. Frederick represents the peak of the he a Weakland man, or a Dolan man? (granted, the lattter really hasn't meant much lately.)

Is he a priest union instigator, or has he been attending just to be the eyes and ears of his boss?

During the pedophile (and otherwise dangerous) priest monitoring fiasco of a year ago, was he the cause of the problem by either omission or intentionally setting up His Excellency, or was he just too afraid to really fall on his sword for his boss?

On the face of it, Fr. Frederick seems to be a neutral pick at best. A theological chameleon at worst.

Now, one question, one prediction, and one suggestion of my own....

Question: If there is a new auxiliary named, will some of the deserving runners-up be named Monsignors? Herda, Hying, Hartmann, Pakenham?

Prediction: Some day soon there will be a (new and unique) challenge to His Excellency. If what I hear is correct, the hint could be: What happens when key senior staff members enter into a marriage not recognized by the Church?

Suggestion: To any emplyees at Mitchell International Airport: keep an eye His Excellency's published schedule in "our" Catholic Herald, with any unannounced trips to Baltimore. What could that mean? Be sure to let me know ASAP!