Wednesday, September 15, 2010



I quote you the opening sentences of an email I just received:

I believe that this is what America should do.
Does anybody know how Ishmael was conceived as per the Bible?  His mother pretended to Abraham that she was Sarah, an act of deceit at the outset.  And then Mohammed was begat on the succeeding generations from Ishmael.
I have met a few Muslims in my life. They don't believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.  They believe that marrying multiple women is okay.  Their new law, the Sharia, is intolerant of other religions.  They believe that women are inferior to men.  They believe that killing Christians earn them Virgins in the afterlife.  Their way is the only correct belief.  And yet we are helping them in Iraq and Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, and other Middle East countries, and yet they won't allow our troops to bring Bibles?  The answers are very obvious; those who are against the Bible and don't believe in Jesus Christ are lost and in the dark.  For the Bible preaches that no one comes to the Father but through Jesus Christ.  The Moslems and other non-Christian nations in the world (Japan, China, North Korea, Thailand, etc...) can't deny the existence of God because the Bible teaches that "For the truth about God is known to men instinctively."
  Click here to read the Biblical account of how Ishmael was born.
I do not want to believe that I received this from a person whom I trust and respect.  She was student in the mission school where I was the Director.  True, that was over 40 years ago.  I wonder what happened in between.

The answer to the first interrogatory sentence, according to this email, as highlighted above, is viciously erroneous.  Ishmael, the son of Hagar, the maid of Abram and Sarai, was not the result of his mother deceiving Abraham.  He was born of congress between Hagar, his mother, and Abram, the husband of Sarai.  This relationship was consummated in sexual contact on the suggestion of Sarai, who was barren and wanted Abram to have a descendant.  So the story goes, Sarai became bitter and mean towards Hagar and so Abram told Sarai to dismiss the maid and her son.  The two of them left.  There came a time during their flight from Sarah and Abraham (God changed their names to this) that they nearly died.  As Hagar was preparing to die, God intervened and blessed them.  He promised a rich and vast descendancy to Ishmael, just as he had promised Abraham.  Not only was there no deception on Hagar's part, she and her son received blessings and a promise from God Himself.
I want to know who gave the author of the email the right to "BURN MY BIBLE?"

The mean spirit and narrow-minded tenor of the first two paragraphs is akin to burning the Bible, an act just as malicious as burning the Koran.  Twisting the stories of the Bible to the degree shown above is, in my opinion, blasphemous and sacrilegious.  Using a twisted version of a Bible story to feed hatred and prejudice aimed at a whole population is the worst kind of personal attack.
To single out the Muslims in this fashion shows a particularly deep dislike of a nation that exists because the head of the descendancy received a special blessing from God.  This is a nation mainly composed of the descendants of Abraham, just as we are.  They are different than we are.  The have different beliefs than we do, but they are children of God, just as we
are.  It is also true that they have a different world view than we do, but it is always better to negotiate rather than to condemn in hatred.  It is always better to bring the God of Love to the table with us, rather than to bring the sword of hatred and reviling.  To single out the Muslims because they do not believe that Jesus is the son of God, and is, indeed God, is to forget that there are many religious people in this world who believe in the word of the Bible but who do not believe that Jesus is the son of God.  The Jewish people do not believe that Jesus is the son of God.  There are many people in the world who don't believe in God, period.  To single out the Muslims for these reasons doesn't prove anything but that the writer has a personal problem with Islam.

Is that a reason why my Bible is being burnt here?

Sharia is called "their new law..."  It is not a new law.  It is the law of the Koran.  It is intolerant to non Muslims, but it is also extremely strict for Muslims.  Islam permits polygamy, but within bounds.  Muslims may not practice polygamy in countries where it is forbidden.  So they may have something to say about that, right?  They are great believers in theocracy, and we are not.  In a theocracy, many of our "freedoms" do not exist.  So our soldiers cannot carry their bibles into Muslim countries.  We do not allow their Koranic law in ours.

Is that a reason why the author of this article burnt my Bible?

More flames -- "The Moslems and other non-Christian nations in the world (Japan, China, North Korea, Thailand, etc...) can't deny the existence of God because the Bible teaches that 'For the truth about God is known to men instinctively'."
Nowhere in the Bible, King James Version or any other is it written as is quoted above.  Nowhere.  What does appear in some writings is that the splendor of the world around us can lead us to the knowledge of the existence of God.  It is not said that the "truth about God is known instinctively."  It is taught by the Catholic Church that humans are endowed with a natural attraction to know the existence of God.  It is taught that knowing the existence of God and further and deeper truths about Him are rendered easier by outside help, like parental teaching, Bible reading, etc.
Furthermore, human beings can, and do, deny the existence of God all the time.  How can the writer of this email say that human beings cannot do that?  They do it every moment of every day, directly and indirectly, in words and in actions.  Retracing my steps, the author of the email includes "Moslems" in the list of people who can't deny the truth about God.  They don't deny the existence of God.  Seriously now, who do you think Allah is?  Is that the truth about God?  Who knows?  Does the author of this email know the truth about God?  Oh, perhaps Allah is a false God, and not the real thing?  Oh, before I forget, who might "Yahweh" be?  The Bible cannot be quoted as it has been in this email.

Stop burning my Bible.

It sends me through the roof when people wring falsehood out of sacred items.  I get perturbed when sacred objects are used to destroy good will and love among people.  The Bible is a Sacrament of Love, not a weapon of mass destruction.  If you are going to quote the Bible, do it correctly, word for word and in the proper context.  It is a sin to make the Bible say something that you want it to say, rather than to quote it accurately and in context so that what it is truly meant to say is apparent to the reader or the listener.

Do not burn my Bible.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


This is a case of mistaken identity, for sure.
It has become the sub-title of the Catholic Church that bills itself as a "RECONCILING MULTICULTURAL CHURCH."  The upper case is not mine, it is part of the parish logo.  This is the same church, "animated by the GOOD NEWS of Christ" where the pastor bills himself as the "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions."  Are we, the faithful congregation of this church to understand that "One Dream, One Future" is the everlasting kingdom of heaven, or something else?  Is this guy a Pastor or a Foreman?  This Kurmujjin thinks of him more as a secular foreman than a Pastor/Priest.  Besides, we recently got a graphic answer to the question.  There were three grainy pictures in the parish bulletin of the church buildings in progressive states of change, from past to desired future.  Plus, over the last two years we have seen highly qualified professionals in ministerial roles be side-stepped, blind-sided and/or terminated from
service or kept, but with slashed wages.  The reason is always that the parish cannot afford the expense.  It is rather difficult to participate in the regularly scheduled liturgies without having the offertory basket passed around.  A decision has also been taken to request weekly donations from catechumens.  Everywhere and at every moment there is the spore of the pastor around statues, pictures, fences, benches, carpets, paint, tile, name-boards on the buildings, sound system, computerized internal camera system inside the church and a dozen other material embellishments of questionable spiritual import.
Over the time of his reign, we have witnessed the ascendancy of a group who are focused on keeping the "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" occupied with money raising projects.  Keeping true to form, these are not high powered, professional "developers" or "producers".  They are volunteers who are seeking to make a mark for themselves in the eyes of someone that they perceive to be an important and powerful person in charge of a large community.

Furthermore, there is but small effort from the resident clerics to assure the progress of the community towards being reconciled to its multicultural reality.  Through it all, not a single one of the residents of the rectory (parsonage) has made the slightest effort to learn the mother tongue of 80 percent of the faithful who make up the community (Spanish).  These same Spanish deprived sloths keep dunning the Hispanic community for more money.  This is what happened this evening at the end of the 7:00 PM Mass.

"Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" who had muddled his way through this Spanish language liturgy by reading the texts in his miserable Spanish devoted 15 minutes of "Post-Mass Altar time" to drum up the troops for generous donations to the "One Dream, One Future" drive.  The first five minutes were occupied by a Spanish language spokesman haranguing the congregation to get them to buy raffle tickets, 11 for $10.00 (such a deal!).  Then the "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" got up, called forth his interpreter and began his part of the snake-oil pitch, in English, of course.  "This is my third year here and I have renewed and refurbished many things.  I am here tonight to make you a promise, in no uncertain terms, I will not stop working at making this property better.  I will continue to add, to refurbish and re-organize the plant."  At this point, I left.  I am not Hispanic, but I feel insulted for them because of this donkey's total insensitivity to the reality that he is manipulating.  When I came back onsite after about 7 minutes, he was still at it.  In 21st century, IM language, I guess I should be ROTFLMAO, but instead I turn to God and ask, "Can't you find someone to shepherd the spiritual needs of the faithful in this parish?"

You priest huggers reading this are saying, "respect the priest.  If you don't like it, do something about it."  I got you there "goodie-two-shoes", I am doing something about it.  I and my wife spend hours and dollars doing things that the "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" and his two incompetent wing men can't or won't do while they are dunning people through an interpreter.

Due to the spending of at least a quarter of a million dollars on material things and the resistance of the ordained ministers to acculturate themselves to the community over the last six years, lay people with higher levels of education and broader and deeper real-life ministerial experience are alienated from the ministry because the clerics insist on calling all the shots.  Many "management" decisions are made in the absence of those who are the designated lay leaders, even in religious areas about which these same clerics know precious little.  The clerics make sure that the lay help is sycophantic and always willing to bow and acquiesce with a "reverent, 'yes, father'" for everything.

In this church, the "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" is the Emperor and the laity, the vassals. The assistant pastors are Princes and the ONE DREAM, ONE FUTURE financial drive gets everlasting pulpit, PowerPoint and behind-the-altar time for months on end while spiritual realities are relegated to small print in the weekly parish bulletin.

This parish is in dire need of a conversion to "Weren't our hearts burning within us as He was explaining the Scripture to us?" (Luke 13; 32)  "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" has to take heed of the words of the Master, "Foolish man, this very night your soul will be required of you."
(Luke, 12:20)
That would be a fitting event for the "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" who seems to be building his own heavenly reward in the memories of the faithful who will remember him when they frequent the house that the "Priest Moderator of Service and Temporalities Commissions" built.