Embattled RNC Chairman Michael Steele, defending himself from charges of heavy spending and loose administration, stemming from an evening spent at a gay-lesbian-bondage club in North Hollywood which a consultant ok’d (but which he didn’t attend) once again played the race card, declaring yesterday that…He and Barack Obama “have slimmer margins of error” because of their race.
I tell Republicans: Get rid of this guy or you’ll be hip-deep in sensational trouble later on in the year when the Dems use stuff like this as equivalent to their high tax and spending scandal—and cut down on what should be a big margin of Republican victory.”
Get him out of there even if you have to use a derrick to lift him bodily in his swivel chair.
For one thing, this guy is a natural to defect…and collect.
No Single Story Behind Abuses: George.
After Easter Mass at Holy Name Cathedral where he didn’t mention pedophile abuses by priests directly, Francis Cardinal George met with the media and said this about the problems in the Church:
“I think the Catholics should try to figure out what is behind a lot of the reporting as they’re gathered from all parts of the world in order to create a single story line when in fact there isn’t a single story line. There are a lot of different stories.”
Gee, all this time I thought there was a single story line.
Starts with Step One, the Lavender Priesthood burgeoning from lax seminaries and bishops…goes from there to pedophile abuse…from there to unconscionable stalling,shoveling cases under the rug and transferring errant priests to different parishes without giving those parishes a heads-up…then suspending the offenders from the priesthood…holding them in Limbo when some of them appealed to Rome… shuttling cases to Rome where five, six years are spent whatever they do in Rome to adjudicate the cases—during which time either the alleged offenders die or continue their abuses while awaiting a determination…winding up with the media getting hold of the stories and prelates saying it’s a concerted media assault on the Church…and/or as the Vatican exorcist said yesterday—Satan is behind the media.
Make no mistake, Satan is involved but every step of the way up the daisy chain—beginning where moderns think his presence borders on superstition, regarding his presence as a mere symbol. Those who took him lightly aided the whole process in Step One in initiating what Paul called “the mystery of iniquity.” To say there’s no single story line…and/or the devil jumped in at the last step with the media…fails to understand the cause and thereby not grasping the cure.
*: St. Marcellinus of Carthage [circa AD 413]. Interesting story here for those who may inadvertently fall into the error of being “more Catholic than the Church.” The great evil of our age is laxity, relativism and cultural decadence but at an earlier time there were heresies that went the other way. In history there were those who were “more Catholic than the Church.”
During Roman persecutions of Christians in the 3rd century the blood of the early martyrs turned thin and a weak breed arose, thousands of people, who turned traitor to Catholicism to save their skins—including many priests and bishops. Rich Catholics offered bribes to get certificates of compliance to get off the hook. But after the persecution passed, a group of hard-liners arose in North Africa following one Donatus. Hundreds of churches in North Africa joined him in a schism.
Donatus argued that that the clergy who betrayed the faith—called Traditores or traitors—could not be restored to holy office or apostolic sucession, meaning that the congregants of their churches were receiving invalid sacraments: and they must be purged. Augustine argued rightly that Catholicism meant forgiveness. Hadn’t Peter denied Christ three times? Hadn’t Thomas doubted the Resurrection? He argued Catholicism was for sinners who by the grace of God could become saints. Aren’t we all sinners?
No, said the followers of Donatus, called Donatists: the clergy were impure and must be excised root and branch—that’s that. For a century churches in North Africa refused to accept repentant ex-apostates, as ordered by a forgiving Rome. Now enter one Marcellius, not a priest but a politician: secretary of state of the Western Roman Empire, top aide to Emperor Honorius and close friend of Augustine, bishop of Hippo (in Africa)…a politician yes, but a truly devout one, a frequent correspondent to St. Jerome.
In AD 409, Marcellinus granted the right to public worship to the Donatists, the heretical group. He lived to regret it sorely. The Donatists began to grow in number and oppress the orthodox. The orthodox appealed to the Emperor Honorius in Rome for protection. The emperor named Marcelinus to be judge of the controversy. In 411 at the Conference of Carthage after listening for 3 days to testimony from orthodox Catholic and Donatist bishops, , Marcellinus ruled that the Donatists were heretics and that they had to give up their churches and return them to orthodox bishops and priests. Meaning to the Donatists that the horrid ex-apostates who denied the Church during persecution were now in the drivers’ seat in North Africa!
It would have been tough to enforce at any rate but Marcellinus and his brother were given the job by the Emperor to enforce the law…and they did, using tough tactics—far too tough from a pragmatic standpoint.. Augustine begged his friend Marcellinus to take it easy, go slow(Augustine proved to be a more realistic, pragmatic person than the pol Marcellinus) …but nope. The outraged Donatists in North Africa still had the preponderant majority and they rose up in insurrection and tossed Marcellinus and his brother into prison. Augustine appealed to the Donatists to release them but nope. He visited Marcellinus in prison. The Emperor sent reinforcements to rescue them but too late.
Marcellinus and his brother were taken out and executed without a trial. Augustine wept and dedicated his book City of God to “my dear friend, Marcellinus.” Marcellinus became a martyr. The emperor Honorius punished the Donatists and praised the late Marcellinus, calling him “a man of glorious memory.” Marcellinus’ name was then added to the Roman Martyrology. Thus Marcellinus was the first politician-statesman to be martyred. Not until Thomas More would there be another.