ALL ABOUT THE LAY PULPIT

Saturday, February 25, 2017

(Not So) Masters of Deceit

A recent Pistrina Liturgica article (click here) caught Dannie wrongly attributing “Lurch” (aka, “Fr. McGuire”) as being the author of something written in a recent St. Hughes bulletin, when in fact it was a verbatim repetition of something actually written by someone else -- a priest named Fr. Simon Tugwell.  And in yet another article (click here), Pistrina found Dannie plagiarizing again – this time from a piece written by a man named Paul Anthony Jones.  Afterwards, Pistrina then gave Dannie a chance to mend his ways (and not plagiarize again), warning him not to plagiarize the following Sunday -- but Dannie didn’t heed the warning: that following Sunday, he passed off even more of Mr. Jones’ writing as his own. (Click here for that article.)

But that’s not the first time that Dannie has plagiarized – nor will it be the last.  For instance, here’s another example: in an article in September of 2016 (click here), we mentioned how Dannie quoted a passage from a Dr. Anthony Esolen (concerning the proper running of a school), following that with a statement giving the reader the impression that SGG’s school and Dr. Esolen’s representation of what a school should be were one and the same.  Nothing, of course, could be farther from the truth. 

The other false impression that Dannie’s readers probably got was that this “Dr. Esolen” was “traditional.”  He is not.  Actually, he is affiliated with Providence College, a Novus Ordo institution (which Dannie would otherwise be bad-mouthing).  But Dannie probably figured that none of his Gerties would check up on Dr. Esolen’s “credentials” or affiliation, and hence figured it was safe to “use” Dr. Esolen for his own purposes.

But plagiarizing is just one of the many ways that Dannie “practices to deceive.”  There are others, one of his “favorites” being name-dropping.  A few examples will illustrate:  Once, Dannie mentioned a priest coming to SGG for a “Solemn Mass with Fr. Cekada and myself” – insinuating that this had just happened.  He was, in fact, referring to an event that had taken place twenty-five years prior.  (See Dannie’s Name-Dropping Bird Droppings.)  Dannie wanted to give his readers the impression that he and this priest were “the best of buddies.”  The priest, at one time on friendly terms with Dannie, had long since broken with him -- and now loathes Dannie.1 

But perhaps Dannie’s most frequent use of name-dropping is that of invoking the name of Bernie Brueggemann.  (See Name Dropping’s Poster Child.)  Dannie always liked to use his name because Bernie -- at one time SGG’s main benefactor (before he left after the 2009 school scandals) -- is still remembered (and revered) by many at SGG, and hence of good “propaganda value" to Dannie.  Once, after engaging in a bit of “Bergoglio bashing,” Dannie added, What would Bernie Brueggemann have to say about this?  And on another occasion, Dannie stated, In the last year of his life [our emphasis], Bernie more than once expressed his wish to be buried from St. Gertrude the Great. He was buried instead from Immaculate Conception, although he once so opposed this group’s scandalous inception in 1989, as to forbid discussion of the very subject in his home.” 

What Dannie conveniently failed to remember was that Bernie spent “the last year of his life” (and longer than that) NOT at SGG but at another church (St. Albert the Great); so, during that time, he couldn’t possibly have “expressed his wish to be buried from St. Gertrude the Great.” And another thing that Dannie failed to mention was that Bernie actually attended Immaculate Conception Church every First Friday for a good number of years before “the last year of his life”; and he did NOT, as Dannie put it, “forbid discussion of the very subject in his home.”  This was, plainly put, a BALD-FACED LIE.  When Bernie’s son heard what Dannie said, he was IRATE, and responded (in an e-mail) that it was “bulls**t.”  For Dirt-bag Dan to say what he did was not only despicable, but downright STUPID, for Bernie’s entire family could bear witness to it’s being utterly false.  However, that did not deter Dannie from making his false claim, because he probably figured that his gullible Gerties would believe it anyway.
Then, of course, another act of deception (and subterfuge) was Dannie’s abortive attempt to sabotage the ordination of a priest in Lawrence, Massachusetts (mentioned in our last article).  Dannie tried to deceive the people there into believing that the young man to be ordained was “unfit.”  (See Pistrina’s article, A Shut Soul’s Hypocrisy.)  This was not only an act of deception, but one of duplicity and mendacity as well.  And who could forget Dannie’s trying every year to convince everyone that SGG’s altar is “privileged” (because Dannie is a “bishop”).  As Pistrina correctly pointed out in its article, Altar” Ego, only a lawfully appointed bishop (with a see) can claim a privileged altar – and Dannie doesn’t qualify on either count.

Yet another (embarrassingly stupid) attempt at deception by Dannie was this one, when Dannie wrote in his Bishop’s(?) ‘Corner of Jan. 3, 2016 that some of his affiliate clerics “had crosses* this Christmas”….  Fr. Mardones says Juarez and El Paso had the worst (and first!) snow in many years, shutting down the cities over the weekend.  Bishop Sanborn’s back grew worse after his Michigan trip for Bishop McKenna’s funeral, and he finally had to cancel his Christmas trip to England and the Continent.”  How sad to miss Mass for Christmas, or be laid up and out of action.”  Dannie was insinuating that Fr. Mardones missed Christmas because of the snow (and that Sanborn missed his trip because of back trouble).

The problem, however, with Dannie’s insinuation that Fr. Mardones missed Christmas Mass (because of the snow) is that the snow down in El Paso and Juarez didn’t even start until the afternoon of the day AFTER Christmas.  So, the snow couldn't possibly have caused Fr. Mardones "to miss Mass for Christmas" – making a liar out of Dannie once again.  (Click here for the El Paso newspaper’s account of the snow-storm).2

There are actually many more examples of Dannie’s deception that we could catalog here – but that would make for a prohibitively long article.  However, two more recent examples bear mentioning: SGG’s embarrassingly inaccurate “Ordo 2016” (and 2017), and its equally pathetic “calendar.”  Dannie tried to pass both of them off as “SGG originals” – but both were largely plagiarized copies of other peoples’ efforts.  And even though they were just “copy jobs” – they were still riddled with errors.  It seems that even when they “practices to deceive” by copying someone else’s work, SGG “can’t get it right.”

The truth is, Dannie’s entire tenure at SGG has been one of deception.  Every week, he plies his Gerties with some form of it, trying to convince them that SGG alone is “the real thing” -- and that everyone else isn’t.  In his recent Septuagesima “Corner, for instance (click here), he bad-mouthed everybody from (of course) Bergoglio to Bishop Fellay and the SSPX -- and even blasted Fr. Jenkins and IC, commenting that “Fr. Jenkins has produced a long, rambling and fatally boring video on the old question of the validity of the Thuc consecrations,” then adding, “I presume he’s worried about the number of his faithful who often attend St. Gertrude the Great.”  (Firstly, Dannie, for “fatally boring, try watching one of Tony’s videos!  And secondly, it’s not IC’s folks who are in danger of defecting to SGG, but the opposite – but one can always count on you to misrepresent the facts!)

The fact that deception is a mainstay of Dannie’s “repertoire” should surprise no one, however, for Dannie is Tradistan’s premier and consummate hypocrite; and, after all, deception is what hypocrisy is all about – pretending to be what one is not.  He (and Tony, of course) will continue to “practice to deceive” – except that they’ll be deceiving no one but themselves.  The truth is, his Gerties are seeing through all of this deception -- and the lying and everything else that goes along with it.  Dannie and Tony, who are always representing themselves as Traddieland’s “authorities on everything,” have in fact shown themselves to be nothing more than bungling know-nothings.

So, what say you, Gerties?  We think it’s high time that you stop deceiving yourselves, and -- as Pistrina so aptly put it -- give these imposters the “pink slip” they deserve, and …

Starve the Beast!
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1 Our article, in fact, prompted one of our readers to write to us and comment about Dolan’s using the name and reputation of other clergy to garner support for himself by suggesting that they are somehow affiliated with him or supportive of him and his various endeavors, when in fact they are NOT.”  Our correspondent later added, “Now that Dolan is under attack and suffering losses on all sides, he is back to name dropping so people won’t realize how alone he is.”  (For a complete account of what he had to say, click here for our article, Starting to Unravel.)  


2 Now one of Dannie’s apologists might argue that it was Sanborn to whom Dannie was referring when he lamented, “How sad to miss Mass for Christmas.”  But, upon inspection, this doesn’t hold up to logic.  As Dannie himself pointed out, it was a Christmas trip (to England) that Big Don missed, not Christmas Mass -- and it was because of back trouble, not snow.  Also, the trip was to be after Christmas anyway; hence, one can only deduce that Dannie was referring to Fr. Mardones – not Big Don -- when he said, “How sad to miss Mass for Christmas.” 

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Sentimentality as a Weapon

A recent Pistrina Liturgica article (click here) did an excellent job of pinpointing Dannie’s fawning (and obsessive) preoccupation with “the baby Jesus” and his syrupy, over-the-top sentimentality that goes along with it. Indeed, Dannie gushes forth with lots of “sentimentality.”  It has become Dannie’s trademark modus operandi, just as pedal-to-the-metal hellfire and brimstone has become Big Don’s.  But there’s something macabre and eerie about Dannie’s sentimentality, because one also finds him matter-of-factly “waxing sentimentally” about baby bunnies being dismembered and devoured by feral felines – leading one to think that Dannie’s “sentimentality” is the kind one might expect to find in a chamber of horrors (or perhaps the padded cell in a home for the criminally insane).

Another example of Dannie’s sick sentimentality is – as Pistrina has often pointed out – his “Doctor Jesus” fetish, where he dresses up an infant “doll” in white “doctor duds” (complete with stethoscope), passing off this peculiar ensemble as “Doctor Jesus” (a custom reportedly practiced by Latinos, from whom he borrowed it).  He usually displays the doll by suspending it from the pulpit – dangling quasi-comically (and inappropriately) -- almost as if in effigy.  Perhaps it is an acceptable custom in some Latino cultures; but here in gringo-land, it comes off as somewhat ridiculous – more fawning puerility from Dannie’s disturbed mind.  (We doubt, too, that Latinos display it as haphazardly as Dannie does.)

Yes, Dannie’s “sentimentality” certainly is “sick”; and, as Pistrina also correctly pointed out, it is just a smoke screen to cover up for the SGG cult’s deplorable deficiencies (and its lack of true Catholicism).  Like everything else he does, Dannie’s “sentiment” is all for show.  The truth is, that behind this sentimental veneer, is a cold, calculating mind that is, ironically, totally devoid of any real sentiment or compassion.  His “sentiment” is just a weapon – or, more precisely, a carefully cultivated business strategy -- that he uses to achieve his goals. There’s nothing sincere or “spontaneous” about it.  It’s carefully measured, and he turns it on or off, like a faucet or tap, to suit his purposes.

Witness the episode between him and a recently widowed woman, for instance. When she declined Dannie’s “invitation” (i.e., his “guilt-tripping” attempt at coercion) to have her husband buried from SGG, his demeanor quickly morphed from syrupy sentimentality to cold vituperation.  Even as she was reeling from having just lost her husband, Dannie proceeded to accuse her of being selfish in “denying” her husband a “Catholic burial.”1 He also told her that he couldn’t attend her husband’s visitation because it was “ecumenically impossible” for him to be in the same room as her son, a Baptist minister (see our article, Hypocrisy’s Poster Child).  This was, in fact, a LIE.  Later, he compounded his lie by telling another SGG parishioner (a friend of the widow’s) that he didn’t attend because he got the date “mixed up.” 2

Of course, the foregoing is not the first instance of Dannie’s lack of any real compassion (not to mention, his lack of veracity).  It was already very much in evidence on Schiavo.  How he and Tony could justify (or even countenance) the murder of Terri Schiavo is simply beyond comprehension.  How could Dannie look on with such disinterested indifference as she was being slowly and methodically starved and dehydrated to death?  What kind of person – one who calls himself “Catholic” -- could even think of doing such a thing?  Where were his “sentimentality” and his compassion then? 3

But perhaps the most prominent (and publicized) example of Dannie’s utter lack of “sentimentality” was the 2009 SGG school scandals.  When the school’s kids were being brutalized by its sadistic principal, Dannie simply ignored the complaints of their irate parents (and ignored their pleas for him to do something about it).  When one woman complained to him, he simply told her that she could, in effect, go somewhere else if she didn’t like it.4  And when another complained about the principal’s boys watching porn on the school computer, Dannie – who is always sentimentally cooing about “protecting the innocence of our children” -- responded with his “boys will be boys” comment – not only disdainfully indifferent, but totally flying in the face of Catholic morality.5  It was his cold insensitivity about all of this, in fact, that precipitated the mass exodus of people from SGG back then.

Not only is Dannie’s demeanor totally lacking in true sentiment, but it has, more often than not, a scheming, conspiratorial aspect to it.  For instance, when a young man was to be ordained at a chapel in Lawrence, Massachusetts, Dannie clandestinely phoned them in an effort to sabotage the ordination.  (See Pistrina’s article, A Shut Soul’s Hypocrisy.)  Fortunately, the effort failed miserably; but it evoked a response from the ordaining bishop.  And, fortunately for Dannie, that bishop, man of good breeding and discretion that he is, did not expose Dannie as the culprit.  Instead, he graciously spared Dirt-bag Dan by not mentioning his name, saying only that an ecclesiastic of prominent hierarchy (to whom we offer the charity of not naming although he didn't have it when he formed his evaluations) called a trustworthy priest on the phone, asserting that we would be ordaining a candidate who lacks sufficient formation -- something, if circumstances were reversed, that no-class, low-life Dannie would NEVER do.6  We, however, DID put the finger on Dannie, for he deserves no such anonymity. 

This episode gives valuable insight into Dannie’s psyche, perfectly illustrating his deviousness and his duplicity, and showing the depths to which this weasel will descend to achieve his goals.  It also shows that, under Dannie’s sentimental veneer, there just isn’t any sentiment.  Like everything else he does, his “sentimentality” is not what it appears to be: it is fake; it is counterfeit -- and it is just one more facet (and proof) of his consummate HYPOCRISY.  In reality, Dannie is anything BUT sentimental.  He is a veritable ”Rasputin in shepherd’s clothing” – a cold, scheming Machiavelli, always ready to use whatever means available to further his agenda.  Fortunately for us, however, his sorry attempts at subterfuge are easy to spot; and he always exposes himself as the hapless bungler that he is.

But as long as his gullible Gerties keep falling for it, Dannie will never learn his lesson, and will continue to use his “sentimentality” strategy (along with his other “weapons”).  And we, of course, must thank him for that, because it gives us the opportunity to continue to expose his folly to the world, thus diminishing what little reputation (and credibility) that this bungling buffoon has left – and thereby increasing the chances that his Gerties, at long last, WILL wake up and realize that his “sentimentality,” like everything else he is and does, is a sham, and – ultimately -- that everything he is and does is not Catholic.

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1 Actually, her husband did get a Catholic burial: Fr. Bernard Hall, when informed of the deceased man’s death by his widow, immediately said a Requiem Mass for him; and, when he attended the man’s visitation (which Dannie refused to attend) he also blessed the man’s body, casket, etc.


2 After we reported about Dannie refusing to come to the deceased man’s visitation, Dannie then changed his story and told an SGG parishioner (named “Natalie” – a friend of the man’s widow) that the reason he didn’t come was because (as we stated earlier) “he got the date mixed up.”   The widow, however, said that no such “mix-up” occurred, and that both she and the funeral director gave Dannie the correct information.  Dannie simply LIED to “Natalie,” thinking that this would “put the matter to rest.”  Well, it didn’t, Dannie.  You only “dug yourself a deeper hole.”


3 At the time, Dannie and Tony were “living high on the hog,” frequently going to their favorite gourmet restaurants.  How they could ignore Terri in her death agony is simply beyond belief – especially when considering the fact that even their pet cats (“Caravaggio,” “Puccini,” and “Vivaldi”) enjoyed all the food, water, and “kitty spa” perks their little feline hearts desired, while Terri lay dying a slow, painful death of court-ordered starvation and dehydration.
4 The boy’s name was “Andrew”; and when his mother complained to Dannie, his (Dannie’s) exact words were, “So you won’t be sending them back” (because she had other kids in the school too).  (See our article, Well, He Got Schiavo Wrong, But…)  (See also, Litany of Reported Abuses at SGG.)

5 When one of the principal’s sons impregnated a female student at SGG’s “school,” Dannie again made light of it.  He said nothing about it, except to later blame the girl involved.  The boy, however, he later feted in an SGG Newsletter article (about his skill at playing the organ) – typical of misogynist Dannie.  And what makes Dannie’s behavior here all the more hypocritical is that he was warned almost a year in advance about the boy’s misbehavior, but Dannie ignored the warning.  (He was warned by one of SGG’s teachers at the time – who was later dismissed from the faculty, then labeled by Dannie and Tony as “mentally unbalanced.”)

6 Dannie delights in exposing (and vilifying) anyone whom he perceives as a “rival” or “threat” to him and/or his SGG cult.  Among others, he did so to Fr. Bernard Hall (click here), accusing him of being a “trouble-maker.”  And before Fr. Hall was ordained, and still a teacher at SGG, he was wrongfully fired; then – because he was a foreign national – he was later “anonymously” reported to Homeland Security.  In an extensive article, a former parishioner chronicles all the events leading up to this.  (Click here for article.)
 Dannie also slandered a Fr. Florent Grassigli.  In a letter, dated November 21, 2013, to the Association Saint Pie V de Chambery (in France), Dannie not only attacked Fr. Grassigli for his “”lack of canonical fitness,” but even attacked his parents, by referring to Grassigli as “the son of a Lyonais communist.”  (In that same letter, he also attacked Bps. Slupski and Dymek as being “canonically unfit.”)  (A copy of the letter to which we refer is in our possession, but in “pdf” form.  Since we are not “cyber savvy” enough to make it a hyperlink, we cannot reproduce it here.  However, if one of our readers can find it (and has the capability to hyperlink it), perhaps he or she could send us that “link.”

Tony Cekada has done much the same, including what is perhaps his most despicable attack, an unprovoked hatchet job on the late Abbot Leonard Giardina (click here).  The SGG cult-masters have “slammed” many others besides, including Fr. Jenkins (of Immaculate Conception), and, in the past, the CMRI (although they and CMRI now seem to be more or less “getting along”).  Actually, both SGG and MHT habitually discredit whomever they perceive as being “in their way.”  And if the full truth were known, the “list” would probably be much greater than what we have reported here.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

There’s Nothing “Traditional” about Tradistan

Just about every week, Dannie Dolan has something to say about how SGG keeps “the real faith,” and (implies) that it is the only one to speak out against Bergoglio & Co. (as if no one else does).  If one were to listen to him and Tony Baloney, SGG is the only “ark of salvation” left on earth.  The same, of course, goes for MHT and the CMRI folks.  They all give their followers the impression that their particular cult is “the chosen one” (although, of late, there has been some unstated “cooperation” amongst them for “political” reasons).

One common thread running through them all is that they keep the “traditional” Faith.  Actually, no they don’t.  Yes, they preach it – but they don’t practice it:  Dannie preaches about the “innocence and purity of our children,” yet writes off the watching of porn as “boys will be boys,” and the brutalizing of school kids by a sadistic school principal as “discipline.”  (Pardon me, folks, but “back in the old days,” all these things were not “traditional,” but mortally sinful.)  And both he and Tony talk about the sanctity of life, yet they justified the slow, methodical dehydrating and starving to death of Terri Schiavo – claiming that her husband had “the right before God” to end her life. (And Sanborn was no different, supporting Cekada’s monstrous position on Schiavo to the hilt.  Of course, he later tried to erase any evidence of his support, by having an incriminating letter to that effect expunged – but we found it and published it.)  (Click here to see the letter.)

And was the CMRI any different?  No, not really.  All during Schiavo, they took the cowardly way out by keeping silent.  But that is the CMRI modus operandi: they like to keep a low profile, and let blowhards like Tony Baloney do the bellowing.  But functionally, they’re no different: when one of their “prominent” parishioners’ (that is, one of their big donors) requested permission for their daughter to have a heart transplant, the Pivster granted it, even though it meant harvesting a heart from a live “donor” – a clear violation not just of Catholic teaching but of natural moral law.  The reason, of course – as it always is with the cult-masters -- was MONEY.  The cult-masters never pass up a “business opportunity.”

The cult-masters – all of them – also preach “forgiveness,” and of being “fair and magnanimous,” yet they regularly use the sacraments as weapons – refusing them to people who violate one of their cult “rules” (such as, going to an “unapproved” chapel while on vacation).  They have even bullied people in the confessional, often refusing them absolution for baseless reasons.  And, of course, they habitually refuse the last rites (and Requiem Masses) to anyone whom they suspect of being “non-traditional” (unless, of course, they have money).  (See article.)  Both SGG and MHT are notorious for doing this.

And, again, is CMRI any different?  Not really.  Their spirit of “forgiveness” and “charity” is on a par with that of SGG and MHT.  A man currently serving a prison sentence, for instance, was refused both confession and communion by a CMRI priest because his crime was considered too “heinous”  (The CMRI priest, of course, also refused to visit him in prison.)1  This priest’s attitude was exactly the same as that of the Pharisees who were ready to stone Mary Magdalene to death.  Where is this “priest’s” Christian charity and forgiveness?  Where did this maggot learn his moral theology?

CMRI’s “moral theology” is, like the other courses taught at its “seminary,” virtually non-existent.  Its “priests,” like those of Big Don’s pest-house puppy mill, have virtually NO TRAINING in real theology, “moral” or otherwise.  The intellectual base of Tradistan’s seminaries, in fact, is on a par with that of a second-rate high school.2   The only things in which they really excel are “guilt-tripping” – one of the main staples of the cult curriculum -- and “cosmetics,” i.e., “looking good for the studio audience.” That – and little else – is what they’re all about:  a bunch of imposters dressed in Roman collars, who don’t have a clue as to what real Catholicism is all about.

They have inculcated their followers with a fanciful, revisionist view of what constitutes “traditional” Catholicism: elaborate, over-the-top ceremonies, along with insane “rules” that have turned them into mini police states.  Their “dress codes” are (as we’ve already noted in the past) particularly draconian.  In the name of “modesty,” the women especially are targeted: prohibitions against “short” sleeves and “short” hemlines on dresses and skirts,2 head-coverings REQUIRED, and – at MHT – even restrictions on the “heel” height of women’s shoes (and, of course, no “open-toed” shoes or “flip-flops”).  There are also restrictions on wearing “too much makeup” (or, in many cases, no makeup at all is allowed), and prohibitions against “body piercings” (girls, e.g., are not allowed to have pierced ears).  And, of course, there are other insane “rules,” such as SGG’s prohibition against anyone re-entering the church -- if they have exited during a sermon for ANY reason -- until after the sermon is over.4

NONE OF THIS is Catholicism.  Such insanity was never enforced (or practiced) “back in the old days.”  The cult-masters have rewritten history, making their flock think that this was “the way it was” back then.  No, it wasn’t.  Short sleeves on dresses, for instance, were common, as were open-toed shoes and other things now verboten by the cult-masters.  We might also add that ankle-length skirts and dresses (that Big Don wants his women to wear at MHT) were also unheard of back then.  And as far as hats and other head coverings are concerned, women often wore them because it was the fashion back then, not because it was required. Similarly, men usually wore “coat and tie”; but, again, it wasn’t required (especially in summer).  And, of course, ridiculous rules about not being allowed to re-enter the church until after the sermon was over simply DID NOT EXIST. 

Another important thing to remember is that back then “in the old days,” pastors and priests lived frugally, and were subject to Church authority.  They weren’t  self-appointed, unbridled prima donnas, answerable to no one, living extravagantly at the expense of their parishioners. And, of course, back then, sacraments were not used as weapons -- refused to people for facetious, fabricated reasons.  Back then too, dogma was promulgated and implemented by Church hierarchy, not fabricated by self-appointed quasi “theologians,” each making up his own “articles of faith,” and then using them as shibboleths to determine one’s “Catholicism” (in order to retain or “excommunicate” followers at will).  And back then, the Church did not use such “police state” tactics as forbidding people to have TV sets in their homes, or telling them what friends they could or couldn’t have.  In short, there was NONE of the nonsense that now goes on at the cult centers.

Back then too, Catholic schools were superior academic institutions – not the pathetic pits of mediocrity that typify today’s trad schools, some of which (like SGG and MHT) are not even accredited, and where education takes a back seat to intimidation.5 And “spiritually,” the trad schools are even worse: at SGG, watching porn on the school computer is a case of “boys will be boys,” but riding a roller coaster is a mortal sin.  Where else but in Tradistan could such maniacal rules find credence – rules which (of course) apply only to the rank-and-file (as many eyewitnesses have testified), while the  “privileged” families (that is, those of the big donors, and, of course, the “clergy”) are “exempt.”  Contrast that with the real Catholicism of the old days, when NO ONE was “above the law”; and everybody adhered to the same set of rules.

In short, the “traditional” cult centers are NOT traditional at all, but cruel caricatures of the real thing: all “holy speak,” and no substance.  They are nothing more than “profit centers” for parasitic, know-nothing con men who grow rich and fat at their followers expense -- where the latter are overworked, financially exploited, and guilt-tripped into submission, and where real Catholic morality has been replaced by draconian “rules” that have no moral basis.  No, they are not traditional at all.  In fact, they are something totally alien to Catholic culture and practice.  They may have letter-perfect rite and rubrics, they may beautifully decorated altars and elaborate ceremonies, and they use all the traditional “buzz words” and phrases, but….

THEY ARE NOT CATHOLIC.
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1 The CMRI priest is attached to St. Therese Church in Lebanon, Ohio, whose parishioners, like he, also shun the man as a pariah.  We wonder what goes through their minds (and especially that priest’s mind) when he reads the gospel about our Lord’s parable concerning the Pharisee and the publican, or the one about our Lord forgiving Mary Magdalene – or the one about the Good Shepherd reclaiming one of His lost sheep?  What about this “lost sheep”?  Where is their “Christian attitude” when it comes to him?  How is what they’re doing contributing towards reclaiming him?   How is it working towards saving his soul?

2 The cult “seminaries,” besides having virtually no training in theology, philosophy, and the other classics that real seminaries used to teach, are also woefully deficient in Latin.  None of their completers is proficient in the tongue, and some can’t even read or pronounce it properly.  What many of the MHT seminarians do (like the kids in its “school”) is manual labor and assorted “grunt work” for Sanborn & Co. – and this qualifies as “class time.”

3 The “laundry list” of dress code prohibitions (much of which we’ve already reported in the past) varies from cult to cult; but in general, dress sleeves must be almost down to the elbow to be considered “modest” (and in some cases, must be down to the wrist).  And, of course, “sleeveless” dresses are strictly forbidden.  Dress hemlines must be well below the knee ((four inches or more); and in some cases, the women are expected to wear dresses that are ankle-length.

4 Even women with crying babies who must leave (because Dannie won’t tolerate the “noise”) must remain in the vestibule until after the sermon is over – no exceptions.  (And, of course, the cult centers provide no “crying rooms” for them.)  And one of the problems with these vestibules is that they are not heated, nor are they air-conditioned; so, mothers with newborn babies, for instance, must shiver in winter and roast in summer in SGG’s vestibule, with nowhere to go but a toilet stall inside the bathroom if they waont to “nurse” in privacy.  The vestibule also typically has no chairs on which these mothers can sit, but instead a hard bench (with no back) for them to use.

5 The trad schools typically have “faculty” with no real academic credentials; and their students don’t take any of the standardized scholastic aptitude tests used for measuring academic performance against other schools – and that’s because the trad schools “don’t measure up” academically.  At SGG, a good part of their day is spent in “choir practice”; and when the children sing at funeral Masses, this also qualifies as “class time.”  And at MHT, the school children are even required to clean the nuns’ “convent” and to do yard work, both of which qualify as “school.”  That is why parents with any brains choose to home-school their children (or send them somewhere else), because they know that, academically speaking, these places are ZEROES.


And, as if that were not bad enough, the cult-center schools are run like concentration camps.  The abuses at SGG are well-documented; and, although things have (of necessity) “quieted down” after 2009, barely anyone wants to send their children there.  Attendance continues to dwindle, with barely two dozen kids enrolled.  And at MHT’s school, things are even worse.  The kids there are encouraged to spy on their families, so that – if anything there runs counter to what the nuns dictate -- the errant family is “disciplined.”  For instance, television sets are FORBIDDEN in homes (unless one belongs to one of the “big three” families), and no one is allowed to socialize with other than cult families.  At MHT, “home life” compares favorably with that of Stalinist Russia.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Pushing the Envelope(s)

We mentioned in our last article (click here) that, after snubbing a woman (by refusing to go to the “wake” of her deceased husband), Dannie had the unmitigated GALL to send her collection envelopes for the coming year – after she had made it clear that she and SGG were “through.”  The woman at first thought that, because she and her husband were “still on the books” as SGG parishioners, the envelopes were mistakenly sent to her by some clerk who “hadn’t got word” of this.  However, the package in which they came was not addressed to “Mr. & Mrs. So-and-So,” but to that woman alone, a clear indication that the sender knew that she was now widowed -- and that she and Dannie had parted not on friendly terms.  What was Dannie thinking?  Did he think that this woman would have “second thoughts” – and return to SGG out of some sense of “remorse” or “guilt” (as many traddies are wont to do)?  Did he think she’d come penitently crawling back to SGG?  Well, think again, Dannie: “It ain’t gonna happen!”

When the woman opened the package and inspected the envelopes, she noticed several things.  First, she noticed that each envelope had some little “saying” on it.  For instance, one had this biblical admonition: “Thou shalt not forget to give thy tithe to the Lord.”  The only problem is, it’s not quite “biblical,” but is a bastardization of a biblical quote.  The actual words are: “Thou shalt not delay to pay thy tithes and thy first fruits; thou shalt give the firstborn of thy sons to me” (Exodus 22:29).

Now the problem with this is that “tithing” [giving one-tenth of one’s income to the Church] applied (and was only appropriate) at a time when the Church provided for peoples’ material needs as well as their spiritual ones.  Back then, it ran such things as hospitals and charities, and catered to most of the needs that are now met by secular authority.  “Medical,” for instance: this is now covered by private insurance (or the government), not “the Church.”  (Nowadays too, people have other insurance to pay, such as, homeowners and car insurance.)  The only things that “Dannie & Co.” provides for is themselves – and the “Lotarski” sinkhole, of course (aka, SGG’s “school”).  The parishioners – the folks who fund this boondoggle – get “the show” -- and little else.1

Dannie conveniently ignores the fact that the needs once met by tithing are now met by taxes – and plenty of them.  In America, not only are there federal and state income tax (and sometimes local tax), but also “FICA” (social security) tax -- plus “property taxes” (and sometimes “personal property taxes”), “gasoline tax,” “sales” (consumption) tax, “entertainment” and luxury” taxes, taxes on alcoholic beverages, tobacco, etc., etc.  If all this were tallied up, a person’s total tax load is well over half his income.  The other thing to remember is that Dannie’s idea of “tithing” is to give one tenth of one’s gross income, i.e., ten percent of one’s pre-tax income – not one tenth of one’s “net” (i.e., after-tax) income.  And what they get for it is, again, “the show,” and little else.  Bottom line: for Dannie to expect people to "tithe" is both presumptuous and inappropriate.  In fact, it's absurd.  

Another “zinger” that Dannie had put on SGG’s collection envelopes was this: “Contribute for Sundays you miss! Expenses stay the same.”  So, if a family were absent from SGG for some reason (vacation, sickness, or whatever) they are expected to “make it up” when they return.  (And to reinforce this “obligation,” each envelope has a space for “previous balance,” “today’s offering,” and [remaining] “balance” – to keep a running tab on how much one “owes” Dannie.)   Dannie, did it ever occur to you that families’ expenses keep coming too – but that they have NO ONE to “make it up” for them when their income gets interrupted?  (And when they go to some other church while on vacation, do you expect them to NOT donate to that church – or do you expect them to cover theirs and yours both?)

Oh yes -- also written on the back cover of the envelope box is this: Church Contributions Other Than Through Envelopes.”  Apparently, Dannie expects his Gerties to fork over even more than what they contribute on Sundays (in addition to the “more” that they give in the “second collection” envelopes the first Sunday of each month) – such as SGG’s “roof repair” fund, to fix SGG's ever-leaking roof (because it was improperly built to begin with).   And, oh yes, there was also included in the box of envelopes one that asked for an “initial offering” of $3 – for the envelopes themselves!  (How about mailing the envelopes “C.O.D.” as well, Dannie, so that your Gerties can pay for the postage too?)

Of course, the “envelope” money is just part of the picture.  In addition to that, Dannie is always begging for money to deal with the “fallout” from SGG’s faulty construction: the just-mentioned leaky roof, the prematurely failing HVAC system, the raccoon-infested walls, etc., etc., etc.  Then there is his “cyber ministry,” where he’s begging for money on the internet (for instance, in his internet “Mass,” with its flashing “donate” button during the  “collection” break).  Then there are the “seasonal” things, such as “Poinsettia memorials” at Christmas, “Lily memorials” at Easter, and his “all souls” scam during Lent (when he makes that phony claim about SGG’s altar being “privileged”).  (And speaking of scams, it was this widowed woman who paid for a “five-day” candle that she found extinguished after the first day.)  The truth is, Dannie has dozens of money-making scams throughout the year to keep his gullible Gerties giving.

But, as if that weren’t enough, he also has them donating their time as well.  SGG has a small army of “holy helpers” (aka, slaves) who toil day in and day out for the cult.  It is a well-known cult axiom that, in order to control people, one must over-burden them with “tasks,” while at the same time “guilt-trip” them about “not doing enough” (such as, attending Dannie’s “show”), so that they have no time – mentally or physically -- for anything else but the cult.  (Every classic cult works on this “business model.”)

One wonders why Dannie’s Gerties can’t see through all of this.  But that’s the way it is.  Once people are thoroughly “immersed” in the cult mindset, they’re “hooked.”2   Once one is in such a mindset, the only way to get “derailed” is for one to suffer some personal insult or injury at the cult-master’s hands.  And even then, some fools will still come crawling back later – either because they “miss the show,” or because they conveniently “dismiss” all the harmful wrong that Dannie has done, “rationalizing” it or “explaining it away.” 3   Another reason is that their recollections of those wrongs grow dim over time, and they “forget,” letting “bygones be bygones.”  (Some even pretend that such things never happened.)  And, all too often, they allow Dannie’s perpetual siren song of sanctimony to draw them “back into the fold,” like a magnet -- at which point, it takes another “trauma” to “derail” them again.

The good news is that one can always count on this to happen: Dannie, being the parasitic annelid that he is, will always exploit his Gerties.  The bad news, however, is that his Gerties have had a habit of “acclimating” themselves to such exploitation, and come to regard it as “the default setting.”   When that happens, it’s usually too late.  So, Gerties, before it’s “too late” for you, wake up and see Dannie for the parasitic leper that he is (and always will be), and GET OUT.

As for that woman who received those collection envelopes from SGG’s shameless leprechaun, she has learned her lesson.  And, speaking of those envelopes, a friend has suggested to her that she send them back to Dannie, along with – instead of one of Dannie’s incorrectly transcribed biblical quotes – this “biblically correct” one: “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s goods.”

_____________________________


1 Dannie’s apologists will no doubt cite all the “apostolates” that SGG must “support.”  We should like to remind them that these “apostolates” are, in almost ALL cases, thinly-disguised VACATIONS for the cult-masters – usually winter getaways to warm, sunny climes to perform “confirmations” that could have been done by the local clergy.  And, although such boondoggles are, as Dannie claims, covered by a special “Bishop’s Fund,” the truth is that they are financed from SGG’s general collections.  And since SGG’s finances are a labyrinthine maze  known only to Dannie, Tony, and “the school principal,” SGG’s Gerties really don’t know where the money comes from.  (We wonder, too, if much of the money earmarked for “roof repairs” and other funding schemes actually ends up being channeled into these “apostolates.”)

2 That’s why – to make sure that they stay hooked and don’t “relapse” – Dannie puts those little “guilt-trip” reminders in his sermons, his newsletters, and SGG’s bulletin (especially his “Bishop’s Corner”) – another classic staple of the cult “handbook.” Dannie regularly complains, for instance, about dwindling attendance at his “show,” as he did in his Gaudete Sunday ’Cornerr: The evening Mass grows worryingly lighter, even for a Holy Day. First Friday in December was a sad affair. No new souls to make their Nine, very low attendance all day long, and many men missed their Guard of Honor. Some never called.”

3 A prime example of this was the man who had the “triple play” funeral for his wife (see footnote 2 in our last article).  This man had originally left SGG after the school scandals of 2009, along with half of its congregation, who formed a new congregation (St. Albert the Great).  This man was actually on SAG’s board, and helped draft some of its bylaws and liturgical practices. 


But, being the “letter-of-the-law” fanatic that he is, he grumbled and complained about SAG’s lack of “ecclesiastical correctness.”  (One of the things that he deplored was the lack of space between the sanctuary and the nave – arguing that it didn’t have the correct “dimensional proportions” of a “proper” church.  Well, it didn’t; but if it did, there would only have been room for perhaps one or two rows of pews.  Eventually, this pompous perfectionist left SAG to “go back home” to SGG and its pontifical pageantry – a great “propaganda coup” for Dannie.  This is probably the chief reason for Dannie giving the man’s Novus Ordo wife that “triple play” funeral -- an honor not even accorded Bernie Brueggemann’s wife.  (Bernie was SGG’s chief benefactor at the time, being single-handedly responsible for SGG’s very existence.  Bernie eventually left SGG; but, unlike the “triple-play” turncoat, he never returned.)