Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Willful Blindness, Complacency, or Cowardice?

For the many who have already escaped the SGG viper pit, it is hard for them to imagine why any rational person would remain there.  Well, a good part of the reason is this: SGG is a cult.  Don’t think so?  Well, let’s look at the classic example of cult, the “Jonestown” sect in Guyana, where the cult leader, Jim Jones, convinced his followers to commit mass ritual suicide by ingesting cyanide-laced Kool-Aid, resulting in the death of virtually the whole cult – over nine hundred people.  One wonders how such a thing could be possible.  But it happened.  It happened because people were conditioned, little by little, to swallow the lies of their cult leader, Jim Jones, and to believe dogmatically and obey everything that he said – to the point of destroying themselves at his command.  Were there dissidents?  Yes, there were.  Did anyone listen to them?  Only a handful – and these were executed -- at Jones’ command -- just prior to the rest of them committing their mass suicide.  Incredible, but true.

But that can’t happen at SGG, you say?  Well, it has – perhaps not to the same degree; but the same mentality is at work, the same control tactics are being applied.  Look at Cekada’s lies that you accepted (or at least acquiesced to) about Terri Schiavo.  Look at all the brutality (and immorality) at SGG’s school that you ignored (and your pastor condoned).  Look at the preposterous rumor put forth about Eamon Shea packing an AK-47 rifle and using it to terrorize parishioners at the annual SGG picnic; many of you fell for it – so much for the “but that can’t happen at SGG” school of thought!

And look at how you have been conditioned by your pastor into believing that SGG is the only legitimate place left for you to go to Mass.  Your clerics have disqualified or invalidated (and alienated) virtually every other traditional Mass center in the area – and they have even banished “errant” parishioners – such as Barry Ahern -- who dared to attend any of them (as if they had the authority to do so!). Even harmless little ladies, such as Mary Ann Panevska, who get in their way somehow get classified as dangerous trespassers and get banished –and you willingly and obediently have gone along with it all.

In ordinary times, such tyranny would not be tolerated.  But these are not ordinary times, so it is not so surprising that many of you go along with such nonsense.  After all, people willingly believe – or at least accept -- the lies that come out of Washington: nobody raises an eyebrow when printing money out of nothing is euphemistically passed off as “quantitative easing.” And how about the latest oxymoron of the hour: “humanitarian bombing”!  We have a dumbed-down populace who have been anesthetized into accepting just about any nonsense that comes along, as long as it gets passed through the “official channels” bowel tract.

Have there been dissidents at SGG?  Yes, plenty; but they have been ostracized in one way or another – labeled as “mentally ill,” “trouble-makers,” and so forth. – and you have swallowed the swill.  Their real problem was that they got too close to the truth, so they had to be banished.  As the years have gone by, your pastor has got bolder and more demanding of his flock – but at the same time, more cocky and cavalier in his behavior, as has Cekada.  These two, along with their deranged SGG school principal, have abused and exploited you with arrogant and wanton disregard – the examples of which have been chronicled and documented by dozens of dissenting parishioners.  Spurned and vilified by their pastor, these dissenters have since left SGG, along with a host of others – including most of SGG’s main benefactors and supporters.  But you bootlicking zombies still remain there.

But not all of it can be attributed to cult mentality.  Many of you do realize -- at least to some degree -- what’s going on; but, unfortunately, you have that same trait of human nature common to many of us:  that we are creatures of habit; people tend to have a built-in “inertia” that makes them averse to change.  Some of that is good: it keeps one from “blowing whichever way the wind blows.”  But overdone stability can lead to complacency, and complacency can solidify into intransigence.  Not only that, but people will often ignore wrongdoing as long as it’s “happening to the other guy” and not to them.  We are all guilty of that to some degree: how many of us do nothing about the injustices going on in our country, as long as “it doesn’t happen to me.”  The sad fact is that it will happen to us eventually, if we continue to ignore it and do nothing about it.

And the sad fact too is that the same mentality is at work at SGG: just because Dolan, Cekada, or Lotarski’s abuse has not yet happened to them, some people keep pretending that everything is OK, and that things will “settle down and get better” once this or that “anomaly” passes.  Like the guy who is content as long as he has the Green Bay Packers on his boob-tube and enough beer in the fridge, they are content as long as Dolan and Cekada put on the weekly “show’ for them, regardless of what else they do:  “No matter that Cekada was wretchedly wrong about Schiavo.  Let’s just pretend that didn’t happen, and go on as before; besides, something like Schiavo won’t happen again.”  Well, it did: on Feb. 19, 2011, a Mrs. “Nyirahabiyambere” was put to death, against the wishes of her family (see account here); and then there’s the case of “Baby Joseph” in Canada (who, fortunately, has recently been rescued).  Actually, this kind of thing is going on every day, in hospices all over the country (and it is part and parcel of “Obamacare”) – and we can thank Anthony Cekada for playing his own little part to help make it happen.

“But, so what?” some SGGers still maintain. “We’ve still got the Mass” – as if that excuses any and all misbehavior accompanying it (and, as if there is no other Mass center left on earth).  It matters little to them what else happens or has happened -- no matter that Cekada was not only wrong on Schiavo but has never retracted it; no matter that the Lotarskis abused and morally corrupted so many of the pupils at SGG’s school; no matter that they bullied and threatened even adults (women, that is – they’re too cowardly to try it on men); no matter that Dolan and Cekada are habitual liars and thieves; no matter that they’ve slandered countless people; no matter that they’ve stolen their Columbus parishioners’ building fund and sold their church out from under them -- and so on: the litany could go on forever.

Of course, in spite of all the concrete evidence of the abuses and wrongdoing at SGG, there are some of you there who still feign ignorance of it all – or who even profess downright disbelief – in one case, even denying DNA evidence itself.  For these intransigents, it seems that nothing on earth will convince them.  But there are some who do realize what’s going on, who do believe – yet they still remain at SGG.  Their excuse?  Believe it or not, it’s something on the order of: “Well. we’ve been going here for so long now, and we don’t want to make a change at this point.”  If that rationale were valid, then we’d all still be going to the Novus Ordo!  Then there’s this: “Well, they have a valid Mass there at SGG; that’s why we go.”   Well, a Black Mass is valid too.  Is that a reason to go?!  These two foregoing “reasons” have to be two of the most preposterous excuses ever put forth!

They are non-reasons!  In fact, those who stay for these “reasons” are the most contemptible, because they’re not staying for mistaken reasons, they’re doing it for no real reason at all.  Folks, instead of staying for a non-reason; leave for a good reason!  One of SGG’s prominent parishioners who recently attended the visitation for Bernie Bruggemann happened to see and talk to Fr. Ramolla, who was also there.  He admitted to Fr. Ramolla that everything that he (Fr. Ramolla) said about the (malformation of) priests coming out of MHT Seminary was true.  He is probably aware of the abuses at SGG’s school too, because his siblings pulled their children out of there.  So, if that’s the case, why are he and they still there?!

Perhaps one last “plausible” reason why SGG’s parishioners stay there is that their pastor has them convinced that we who have left are “picking” on them – the old “sympathy” ploy:  “Why don’t you people just leave us alone here at SGG?”  Well, for those of you who have been paying any attention at all, the answer should be glaringly obvious to you: your pastor has not left any of us alone!  In addition to his ongoing ignoring of the truth, His Excremency regularly throws out turdbits of insinuation as memory joggers to keep the sheep in line, such as the time he used an episode involving the damaging of a statue of Christ the King as an occasion to direct some negative symbolism against the pastor and people of St. Albert the Great.

 If he maligns and slanders people – which he has done and continues to do – why should he (and you) expect us not to respond to that abuse?  We are not, as Cekada charges, “people with an axe to grind”; we are simply rape victims tired of being raped -- tired of being trampled on, tired of being slandered, as Fr. Ramolla was in Dolan’s apology sermon -- and who won’t stand for it any more.  Are we not entitled to defend ourselves?  So, please, spare us your hypocrisy -- don’t insult us (and your own intelligence) by playing the “double standard” game.

I recently came across a letter, written by Mrs. Janet Gaye – a woman who has known and supported both Dolan and Cekada since their seminary days -- addressed to Bishop Dolan.  In it, she requested an explanatory response from him regarding several injustices that had recently occurred, including an incident where John Lotarski, one of Mark Lotarski’s unruly sons, came to Mrs. Gaye’s house and actually threatened her (yes, your same John Lotarski whom Dolan rewarded with a trip to Florida to emcee a priest’s ordination!).  Dolan’s response to Mrs. Gaye:  he ignored her.

I point out this one instance, because that is so typical of Dolan: he repeatedly responds to people by ignoring them.  Mrs. Gaye, by the way, has known these men longer than anyone at SGG (including you too, Kirby) -- since their seminary days, in fact.  She has been a more-than-loyal supporter of them in the past, donating her time, money, and talents to their cause.  Save for Bernie Brueggemann, it is hard to find someone who was more loyal than she -- yet she was discarded by them, like yesterday’s newspaper.  In fact, everyone who airs a legitimate complaint to them is not only ignored, but is then immediately and thoroughly vilified and disparaged, usually being labeled as “mentally ill” or a malcontent.  They have done this to countless people, over and over again.  Like eating and breathing, it is second nature to them.

Yet some folks at SGG swallow it, and drink their “Kool-Aid.”  It is amazing to think that Dolan or Cekada can make some claim or accusation with zero proof, backed up by zero witnesses; and some will gullibly accept it – even when these two have been proved to be lying (which is a pretty regular occurrence).  Yet, at the same time, they’ll reject hard, proven facts – and even blame the victim.  Case in point: Fr. Ramolla – Dolan’s shameless slander of him in his infamous “apology” sermon was accepted carte blanche by a good many of SGG’s parishioners – especially the older women – even though Dolan had no proof whatsoever to back up his accusations.

But for those of you who did not fall for such nonsense, then what’s your excuse?  What keeps you there at SGG?  Why have you not left?  What’s holding you there?  Are you afraid of what your fellow parishioners will say?  Or are you afraid to admit that you “were wrong all these years” about Dolan and Cekada?  Are you afraid to “offend” them, or are you actually afraid of them?  Is it pride?  Is it the “inertia” “or complacency “ thing?  Or have you just not taken the trouble to investigate and seek out the truth -- to listen to what so many have for so long been trying to get across to you?  Then make a start, by clicking here.

Read through it -- especially School Dazed Revisited (click, individually, parts one, two, three, four, five, and six to get it all) -- and familiarize yourself with it.  Then, try to find one instance where what Dolan and Cekada have said can be corroborated by eye-witnesses or backed up by facts.  You can’t do it.  Then ask yourself this: why would all these other people lie?  What could they have to gain by it?  How could they fabricate such varied and detailed information?  And, conversely, look at the words and actions of Dolan, Cekada, and their Lotarski cohorts, and see how they “add up.”  For instance, in Mrs, Gaye’s letter, why do you think John Lotarski came to her house?  To deliver her newspaper?  To mow her lawn?  To say “howdy”?  I don’t think so.  And remember, there is a documented police report on it, with plenty of eye-witnesses.  Another example: many of you remember the “bell-ringing” incident on Palm Sunday 2009.  For those of you who were there, you saw with your own eyes: you know that what Cekada says about it in School Dazed is a lie.  In fact, Dolan and Cekada’s accounts of it even contradict each other.

Read also not only what your shepherds have written, but what priests like Fr. Stepanich have written.  See if you can find ONE THING that can be corroborated with hard evidence.  You can’t.  Fr. Stepanich’s “evidence” is nil; it is merely assertion and accusation from misinformation fed to him by Dolan, Cekada, or one of their sycophant followers – with nothing to back it up.  That they have pulled a venerable old priest like him out of the woodwork to pander their lies is beneath contempt.  And it does Fr. Stepanich no credit either to blindly accept what they say without question.  He should know better.

As you read, it should soon become apparent to you that nothing Dolan or Cekada says has one shred of evidence to back it up – not one – and that what those who oppose them are saying has the ring of truth to it – that they have no reason to lie, no vested interest.  And even if you haven’t read any of that information, you no doubt have heard or seen enough, either from others, or with your own eyes – to have convinced you that something was not right – especially with regard to the school.  That is why so many of you do not send your children there.  And that is why so many of you who did have since pulled them out.  If you honestly try to seek out the truth, you will find that the SGG clerics have been consistently lying all along.

Then, it should also start to sink in, that all those people discredited by them – those they’ve labeled as “trouble-makers,’ “disgruntled malcontents,” “mentally ill,” and so forth – have all been disparaged unjustly; that they are innocent victims of character assassination (actually, that should have been evident from the start) – people like Dr. Thomas Droleskey, Bernie Hall -- and Fr. Markus Ramolla.  In spite of Dolan and Cekada’s best efforts to smear Fr. Ramolla (and get him deported), both he and his new parish, St. Albert the Great, are flourishing.  The more they try to hurt him, the more they hurt themselves -- and the more they discredit themselves in the eyes of the world.

Have you ever wondered why Nikki Lehman (no longer Sr. Mary Magdalene) left SGG?  And Sr. Scholastica?  And Sherry Tansky?  Sr. Scholastica suffered a nervous breakdown, and Nikki nearly the same.  Nikki habitually toiled past midnight – often to the point of exhaustion -- getting the church ready for “the show,” as did the other two.  For Nikki, Holy Week was more like Horrific Week, getting everything ready for the always exacting and never satisfied Dolan.  The emotionally broken Sr. Scholastica was the first to go.  Then Sherry left in protest over the way Nikki was being treated.  When Nikki had finally had enough, she left too.  That’s why Dolan then had to come up with his “fourteen holy helpers” scheme, recruiting from the already overworked parishioners to fill the void.

Remember Fr. Ferrera, and Frs. Jeremy and Adam Cyr?  They left abruptly, too (Jeremy, in fact, left the priesthood).  Have you ever wondered why, and why several Latin American priests “never worked out”?  Have you ever wondered why Dolan and Cekada have had such a ‘turnover” rate -- and why they were the “common denominator” in each and every case?  The same goes for all the parishioners who have left (or were kicked out) – doesn’t it strike you as odd that all of these people could have been the “bad guys,” and only Dolan and Cekada the “good guys”?  I think that if you ponder all these things a while, you’ll stop wondering and start coming to some conclusions.

The more you make yourself aware of, the more that those of you who are open-minded enough to accept facts will become convinced – and will resolve to do something -- to do the just thing. You will realize that you cannot go on ignoring reality, that you will not be able to continue to “pretend” and to play the “ignorance” game.  Realize, too, that the longer you remain there at SGG, the more you support their agenda -- the longer you perpetuate them and their pernicious school principal.  Why let them continue to indulge themselves at your expense?  Why, by your acquiescence, help them to continue to persecute and defame innocent people?

If you become convinced, then don’t just sit there – act on those convictions!  Do what justice demands:  leave SGG.  Leave them.  And by all means, don’t give them any more money; don’t keep subsidizing them.  What are you waiting for?  -- for one of your kids to be abused by Lotarski? -- for one of your sons to be corrupted with porn by one of his boys? -- for one of your daughters to be impregnated by one of them? -- for Dolan to once again “write off” deeds like that as “boys will be boys”?  And yes, he did say that; sorry for you doubting Thomases that we don’t have a recording of him saying that.  But we don’t have to -- it’s what he didn’t do that’s important:  that he said absolutely nothing in the face of the Lotarski boys’ misconduct.

For those of you who still prefer to ignore reality and to wallow along in your delusionary fantasyland of denial and pretending; who want to go on pretending that Cekada was right about Schiavo; who want to go on blindly pretending that what the Lotarskis did didn’t really happen; who refuse to recognize Dolan’s apology sermon for the vicious slander that it is (and from the pulpit, no less!); who refuse to see his attempt to get a fellow priest deported as the cold, calculated treachery that it is (and who in some cases even endorse it); who can write off fornication and pandering of pornography as “boys will be boys” – shame on you!  How wretchedly and willfully blind can you be?

Recently, a fellow parishioner of yours berated a member of the Brueggemann family for using the word “bullshit” in reaction to Dolan’s lie about Bernie Brueggemann wanting to be buried from SGG (see article on that) – calling his use of that word “unbecoming of a Catholic.”  Oh yes, madam!  Using that word is right up there -- on a par with fornication, pandering of pornography, slandering someone from the pulpit, dispossessing people of their parish, and turning in a fellow priest to Homeland Security!  Please, woman (and anyone who thinks like you), spare me your sanctimonious condemnations, your pretended and pretentious prudery, your counterfeit self-righteousness, your sniveling, small-minded hypocrisy.  Save them all for the dung heap, where they belong.  If you want to stay there with your reptilian shepherds, fine!  Enjoy it!  Enjoy the lies.  Enjoy the duplicity.  Enjoy the exploitation.  Enjoy the Kool-Aid.

People like that will probably NEVER wake up – not even if one of the four horsemen of the Apocalypse came knocking at their door.  Will you emulate such lunacy as that?  Or will you do the cowardly “human respect” thing: be too timid or afraid to act – for fear of what your pastor or fellow parishioners might say?  Will you allow the SGG vipers to “guilt trip” you into doing nothing?  Or will you remain acquiescent simply out of complacency or “inertia”?  Bear in mind:  whether you act or not, Dolan and Cekada’s evil ways will catch up with them, and they will do themselves in.  But whether they take you down with them -- well, that’s up to you.  The choice is yours.  Think about it.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Biting the Hand That Fed Them

On Friday, February 25, 2011, our dear friend -- and an exemplary Catholic gentleman -- Bernie Brueggemann, was laid to rest.  Since then, much has been written about this simple, holy man – both by family and by friends.  But do we need one more eulogy for Bernie?  Yes, you bet we do!  Most of us know about his generosity to the Church, and to SGG (St. Gertrude the Great) in particular.  But I’m not sure how many are aware of the total scope of what he did for SGG.

First off, he personally donated to them well over a million dollars; and if one were to include what his sons and the rest of the extended Brueggemann family have given, that figure would be at least doubled.  It is safe to say that, without Bernie, SGG would not materially exist as it does today.  The church that the SGG clergy use, the rectory in which they live, their “convent” (which hasn’t seen one nun yet), their school – all of these were bankrolled principally by Bernie.  And he continued to give: he subsidized the school’s operation with several thousand dollars each and every month (without which it could not have functioned).  Mark Lotarski, the school’s principal, owed his job, his salary -- his livelihood -- to Bernie.

But Bernie’s generosity didn’t stop there.  As many know, Bernie was head of Bavarian Trucking, the trash-collecting business.  Bavarian, of course, provided trash-collecting service to SGG gratis – no charge.  When SGG’s new facility on Rialto Road in West Chester, Ohio (their present location) was built, Bavarian supplied all the excavating equipment and labor for them – also gratis – and all done without any fanfare.  Few parishioners were even aware.  He just did it.

He was like that at Bavarian, too, where he worked -- even “going out on routes,” pitching trash and driving one of the trucks -- well past his retirement age.  One eye-witness relates that on one occasion, when Bernie was driving the truck, he noticed that one of the trash collectors had on worn boots.  Without even asking, Bernie bought him a new pair.  If not for that eye-witness, no one would have ever known of this random act of charity.  If all was known of the acts of kindness that Bernie did anonymously for others, I’m sure that it would fill many, many pages.

But all of that is only half the story: what Bernie did spiritually for SGG was unparalleled.  Perhaps his most recognized contribution was his faithful attendance every First Friday at SGG – not only at Mass, but at All Night Adoration.  For decades, this man kept vigil all night, with perhaps an hour or two cat-napping to get him through, every First Friday.  Even in failing health, well into his eighties, Bernie kept this up.  He was unfailing in his service and support to SGG.  Both spiritually and materially, he gave them his all.

So, what made Bernie leave SGG?  Why would the greatest benefactor that SGG has ever known leave there?  There are a number of reasons.  His doubts about SGG probably started, as they did for others, back when Cekada took his appalling position on Schiavo – especially when facts came out proving him wrong beyond a shadow of a doubt.  Although Bernie never vocalized about it, I’m sure that he was dismayed (if not appalled) that Cekada would take such a stand.  But he kept it to himself, not wanting to “go against” the SGG clergy.

But subsequent years brought more scandalous behavior from them, especially with regard to the brutal behavior of SGG’s school principal and the openly obscene and immoral behavior of his sons (click here for details) — all of which was ignored and even condoned by Dolan and Cekada.  Faced with angry parishioners and a school faculty (in open revolt) demanding that he replace the principal with Fr. Markus Ramolla, Dolan feigned giving in to their demands, then reneged on that promise -- keeping the principal and firing the latter on trumped-up charges.  To add insult to injury, Dolan maliciously calumniated Fr. Ramolla from the pulpit in his now-infamous apology sermon.  This proved too much for Bernie (and his last remaining son at SGG), and they both left in disgust.  Even then, Bernie did not speak out against the SGG clergy, though he had every right to do so – and ought to have done.

And how was Bernie’s generosity and loyal service rewarded?  What did Daniel Dolan do?  Did he exercise the same restraint as his long-time benefactor did?  Of course not!  Being the treacherous viper that he is, he started on an immediate campaign to try to make Bernie feel guilty about leaving SGG: this viper had the haughtiness, the arrogance, the monumental hubris, the unmitigated gall (shall I substitute an “anatomical” metaphor here?) to demand – for Bernie to get back in SGG’s (and his) good graces – that he offer up masses in penance!  He told Bernie that if he didn’t do so, he would be dishonoring the memory of his dead wife Rita.

Dolan even had some of his loyal sycophant cultists write similar letters to Bernie to try to “shame” him into coming back to SGG.   It is hard to imagine how anyone could sink that low – or have an ego so exalted -- but this is typical of Dolan.  That’s his modus operandi: he’s a user/abuser; he doesn’t know any other way.  It’s a measure, too, not only of his monumental ego, but also of his contempt -- and of his total lack of humility, compassion, and conscience.

Usually, Dolan will discard someone after he has used him.  But in Bernie’s case, Dolan wanted him back, even though he knew that he had already sucked him dry (although he may have suspected that there was still some more blood left in the turnip).  But Dolan was well aware that Bernie’s leaving reflected badly on him; and he wanted him back for “appearance’s” sake.  However, his “guilt-trip” ploy didn’t work; Bernie didn’t take the bait.

Then again, at Bernie’s death, he had to give it the “appearances” try again. He had to give some semblance of respect to Bernie – enough to make it look “convincing” to the SGG subservient -- since Bernie was (obviously) still loved and respected by them all.  So, he had a “memorial” Mass said for Bernie, and forced out some affected words of praise for him in the SGG bulletin – again to placate the SGG faithful (he had to -- he had no choice; it was a matter of simple political necessity).  But, of course, he used it to further his own agenda – and to slam his enemies. [for what he said, click here; but to get the truth, click here and here].

But, other than the aforementioned political necessities, how else did he or Cekada pay homage to their long-time and greatest benefactor??  Did either show up at Bernie’s visitation -- as Frs. Thielen and Ramolla did?  No.  Did they show up (as those two did) at his funeral Mass?  No.  Did they show up (as they also did) at the graveside service?  No.  Now perhaps they were too ashamed to show their faces at Bernie’s funeral; but the more proximate reason is that Bernie could no longer do them any more material good – so why bother to show up?  That’s what is known as “SGG gratitude.”

But that kind of “gratitude,” once again, is just part of their modus operandi.  They have a long history of biting the hand that feeds them; and that’s not the first time that they’ve done it to the Brueggemanns, either.  To cite an example from a few years back:  Mark Lotarski, the SGG principal, decided to humiliate a boy in front of his classmates.  The boy was Andrew Brueggemann, the son of Joe Brueggemann (one of Bernie’s nephews). It seems that Andrew bought “improper” school supplies; and Lotarski, reaming the boy out in front of the class, threw those (newly bought) supplies into the trash can, reducing young Andrew to tears – this in the school that the boy’s Great Uncle Bernie made possible – the school without which Lotarski would have no job.  When the boy’s mother complained about it to the SGG clerics, she was told to leave if she didn’t like what happened – that is just one instance of how the Brueggemans were repaid for their loyal support of SGG.

Want another? Cathy Beil (nee Brueggemann), Bernie’s niece and Joe’s sister, who painstakingly put the Sacred Heart emblems on SGG’s sanctuary walls – well, she was roundly reprimanded by Anthony Cekada for daring to question his justification of the murder of Terri Schiavo – that’s how she was rewarded (see her correspondence with Cekada on Schiavo).  As a result, most of that branch of the family has left SGG as well, as have all of Bernie’s children -- and as have countless other recipients of Dolan and Cekada’s unique brand of “gratitude.”

For those of you still left at SGG, your turn will come, too: you too will receive their “gratitude.”  And when you do, consider yourself lucky, for this will provide the opportunity (and perhaps the impetus) for you to break your bonds and free yourself from this venomous pair.  Expect it to be a humiliating, perhaps costly, even painful, lesson – but it will be worth the pain.  Don’t prolong your agony.  Extricate yourselves. -- you’ll be glad you did.  And for those of you at Our Lady of the Sun in Arizona, pay attention – your turn will come too.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Poetry Corner

Folks, not to be outdone by the SGG Bulletin’s Poetry Corner, we have decided to offer our own poetic rendering, except that we’re doing them even one better – make that two better.  First, the following is not just a poem, but a song as well (to the tune of that famous Irish air, Danny Boy).  Secondly, it is a song with a link (Bishop’s Lodge;).  We thought it just might pique the reader’s interest as to why we did that.  Yes, there’s a reason!  We’ll leave it to you to ponder.  So, without further ado…

Danny Boy

Oh Danny Boy, the sheep, the sheep are calling
For you and Tony boy to go bye bye;
No more of jaunts with Tony to the Bishop’s Lodge;
No more of gourmet food or living high.

But come ye back when the sheep are in the meadow,
There, with our tar and feathers, we will be.
You’d better skip, you and your shadow;
Get out of Dodge, you snakes, and let us be.

Oh Danny boy, your revenue’s a-falling;
It won’t be long, until you snakes are through.
The cult’s defection rate, it’s quite appalling
The sheep in droves, in droves, are leaving you.

But you don’t care, if you can go on living
With what you’ve swiped of St. Clare’s hard-earned cash;
It doesn’t matter what the sheep are giving;
You can survive, you’ll still have quite a handy stash.

But Danny boy, don’t count on that forever,
You’ll need some better ways to bring in dough
Than Tony’s book, which you think’s really clever;
But like S-G-G, it’s just another “show.”

For Tony’s book, you see, it’s not a-selling,
Because it’s full of trite, sarcastic pap;
And its reviews, well they are just a-smelling.
In short, it’s just not selling really worth a crap.

And now the flock, your remnant flock, is shrinking;
And by and large, they’ve all been vacuumed dry.
So if I were you, I really would be thinking
It’s time to grab what’s left, and go bye bye.

Bye bye to Mark, and to his band of bestial thugs.
Who’ve misbehaved in oh so many, many ways.
Whether it be obscene gestures or illegal drugs
They’ve done their part to number all your days.

Bye bye as well to Puccini and Vivaldi,
Those spoiled cats, that you dearly loved so well.
For budget’s sake, it will be such a pity
To have to say goodbye to them as well.

But you can bequeath the both of them to Marky’s boys,
Who from their watching all those torture flicks,
Will find some way to take these new-found kitty toys,
Some way, some way, to get their sick, sadistic kicks.

But you shouldn’t mind, as you boasted once before,
“Boys will be boys” -- I think that was your brazen phrase.
Just as in Terri’s case, you’ve no compassion any more.
The likes of you, that really should not faze.

Because it’s Mammon – that is what you’re all about,
It’s not our souls, our lives for which you really care.
The only thing for which you really care about
Is whom you can get to pay your earthly fare.

This is a ploy, that’s in the past worked really well;
It kept the worldly cares from without your door.
But will it really keep you from the gates of hell?
What will you do, when death comes knocking at your door?

When come ye back to face your Maker once again,
When comes that time, then think of where you will go.
‘Cause when your fortune’s gone and life’s at bitter end,
Oh Danny boy, oh Danny boy, He’ll judge you so.

Yes, Danny boy -- Oh, Danny boy -- He’ll judge you so…

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Plea to Traditional Clerics: No More Silence

Does anyone remember Daniel Dolan’s celebrated (make that disgusting) apology sermon of November 15, 2009?  (To refresh your memories, go ahead – click here and listen)  And does anyone know how many traditional clerics registered any dismay with that sermon?  Or how many traditional clerics reprimanded Dolan for that sermon’s despicable slander?  I’ll give you a hint: it’s a number that begins with a “z” and rhymes with “Nero.”

Here’s another question for you:  How many traditional priests – other than Fr. William Jenkins, Fr. Brendan Dardis, and perhaps one or two more -- publicly denounced Anthony Cekada’s article justifying the murder (yes, murder) of Terri Schiavo?  And how many of them denounced his amateurish reply to a Catholic neurologist’s account of the Schiavo case?  Answer again: zero.

Ah, one more: when Dolan & Co. attempted to get Fr. Ramolla deported to Germany (their efforts were in vain, by the way), where was the hue and cry against that?  When they did the same to Bernard Hall, who devoted over a decade of service to them, how many traditional clerics denounced their base treachery?  Once again: zero.  [Editor’s note:  Bernard Hall, a British national, a man whom Cekada and Dolan have known for over thirty years, was invited by them to come to SGG to teach.  Cekada was supposed to have taken care of Mr. Hall’s immigration papers, but made no attempt to do so – even though the latter was there at SGG for over five years.  When Mr. Hall complained about the abuses at SGG, he was fired.  A few months later, Cekada turned him in to Homeland Security; his deportation is still pending.  For a more detailed account of the betrayal of Mr. Hall, click here].

Did anyone demand that Daniel Dolan retract his calumny against Fr. Ramolla?  Did anyone demand that Anthony Cekada do the same about Schiavo?  Was anyone upset about Dolan and Cekada’s efforts to get Fr. Ramolla and Mr. Hall deported?  Did any fellow clerics censure Dolan or Cekada for this?  Was either even mildly chided?  No.  There was pure silence.  Yet when Fr. Ramolla, in an interview, tried to defend his position against Dolan’s slander, what happened?  He was immediately told to retract it, and to render an apology.  He was forcibly silenced.  Why?  Who told him to retract?  Who forced him to apologize?  Why was not the same demanded from the SGG clergy?  Why the “selective enforcement”?  Why the double standard?  Good questions.  It seems that the unholy trio of Dolan, Cekada, and Sanborn are made of Teflon, untouchable and immune, allowed to do whatever they want; but woe to the poor soul who gets in their way, or who tries to defend himself against them!  It seems to be another case of “ignore the culprit, blame the victim”!

Dolan’s slander of Fr. Ramolla was doubly detestable in that it was done not only publicly, but also from the pulpit – where only the word of God is supposed to be preached.  That most of you are apparently ignorant of this is incomprehensible; several of you have been informed about it (and about the myriad, blatant abuses committed by the sadistic principal of SGG’s school); many have done their best to inform (and warn) you and others about it.  The same goes for Cekada’s detestable and highly public statements on Schiavo; for you to be ignorant of all of this is inconceivable.  But, if -- for some inexplicable reason – that has been the case, it is no longer.  You now know.  You now have no excuse to remain silent.  I wonder: if, instead of Dolan publicly slandering Fr. Ramolla, it had been the other way around, how many of you would have remained silent?  Not many, I’ll bet.

We, the laity, are tired of donating our hard-earned dollars to predatory priests who take our money and then dispossess us of what we have paid for, as these scoundrels at SGG have done.  The clerics of SGG, and those who have been ordained from their disordered seminary in Florida, have been anything but good shepherds.  They have scattered and abused their flocks.  They have exploited them.  They have swindled them, and used their ill-gotten proceeds to build their own little material empire.  They have vilified and slandered anyone who has had the courage to stand up to them.  Are you going to perpetuate such wrongdoing, by your silence and your inaction?

Wake up and pay attention, because we have woken up.  Sanctimonious silence in the face of injustice won’t work this time.  Pretending that “all is well,” and using heavy-handed “stone-walling” -- admonishing us to “shut up and not make waves,” or feigning “righteous indignation” and labeling our just complaints as “slander” -- won’t work this time.  And condescending, irrelevant non-answers to our complaints, such as, “Well, they have a valid Mass there at SGG” – that too won’t work this time.  Or playing Pontius Pilate -- washing your hands of the whole affair -- won’t work this time.  And, finally, hoping that “the dust will eventually settle” and that “we’ll just go away” after having had our say – that’s not going to work, either.  We’re here to stay -- to see it to the end.

For some clerics, there seems to be a tendency to “cover up” for fellow members of their “Roman-collar club” – or to put up with a situation in the hopes that “things will get better.”  The CMRI tried, for a time, to live with the situation with Francis Schuckardt.  It didn’t work; things only got worse -- until the CMRI clergy faced up to reality and cleaned house; things then got much better.  At SGG, there is not enough of a critical mass of decent clergy left to do the same; there are too many bad apples in charge of the barrel.  It is up to you, their fellow traditional clergy, to do something, not just for your own good but for the good of the traditional Catholic cause itself – because that is what is really at stake.

“Well, traditional Catholicism can be helped in a positive way,” you might say.  Or you might suggest, “reason with them; give it one more try.”  Answer: “been there, done that – way too many times.”  Scores of us have tried to reason with the clergy at SGG -- to no avail.  In each and every case, the faithful have invariably been stone-walled, vilified, slandered, mistreated, exploited – you name it.  And in each and every case, Dolan and Cekada have steadfastly refused to admit any guilt or wrongdoing.  On the contrary: they have shifted the blame to every one of their victims.  So, for you “compromise seekers” in the crowd, save your wishful thinking.  One cannot reason or “negotiate” with a serpent.  One cannot peacefully co-exist (for long) with a tumor.

So what are we asking you, the clergy, to do?  Well, first familiarize yourselves with what has been going on the last several years.  How?  Start by reading some of the accounts about the scores of people who have been victimized by Dolan and Cekada over the years.  And where can you find such information?   SGG Info Archives is a good place to start.   Many, many concerned (and victimized) people have taken great pains to chronicle what has happened.  And how can one be sure that they are telling the truth?  First of all, by their sheer numbers:  there are just too many of them to have all been mistaken – with the SGG clergy being the same common denominator in each and every case.  Secondly, much of what they have said can be corroborated by documented facts, or by numerous eye-witnesses (some of whom are still at SGG!).  In contrast, every one of Dolan or Cekada’s assertions is baseless, with no proof whatsoever. They have been caught in lies several times – and in one instance, even contradicted each other.

Lastly, what these people say has the ring of truth to it.  Contrast that with the things that Dolan and Cekada have written.  Cekada’s inaccuracies in his shameful account of Schiavo are laughable -- none of which he has retracted to this day.  And Dolan’s “apology” sermon of November 15, 2009: does that have the ring of truth to it? – or the ring of treachery?  Read the former; listen to the latter.  Why? Because they give real insight as to what these two are all about: no compassion, no conscience – just self-interest (read also Schiavo Revisited, and see if you don’t agree). 

Read also the dozens of articles painstakingly chronicled and compiled in SGG Info Archives – especially School Dazed Revisited. In this six-part series, Cekada’s School Dazed assertions are refuted in a “side-by-side comparison” format.  Click on each one of the following six parts (part 1, part 2, part 3. Part 4, part 5, part 6) to get the whole story.  As you read that and more, things should become painfully evident:  the countless instances of abuse and exploitation, Cekada’s Schiavo travesty, the extravagant lifestyle of the SGG clergy, the lies – all of it.  The shameless and arrogant character of Dolan and Cekada will come through, loud and clear.  Then, after reading this, do what your conscience must demand that you do.

We are keenly aware that many of you are extremely busy administering to the spiritual needs of your flocks and that you perform yeoman work in God’s service (for all of which we are sincerely grateful), and that you may be hard-pressed to find the time to read all of what has been proposed here – but you must.  You are not just providers of the sacraments; you are protectors of the flock as well.  Doing the one without the other is not a half-measure; it is no measure.  What is going on at SGG reflects negatively on the whole traditional community, just as the Schuckhardt business once did; it is hurting all of us – right now. The evil at SGG will not go away by itself.  It is not some temporary “embarrassment” or one-time anomaly that can be swept under a rug; it is a continuing cancer that must be excised.

So, again, we ask you to start “networking” with other clergy, to educate yourselves on what’s going on, to seek out the truth -- you have a duty to do so.  Then, speak up.  Catholics, especially traditional Catholics, listen to their clergy.  Speak; they will listen.  But, by all means, do something.  Do not take the expedient of doing nothing; that is the coward’s way out.  Charity demands that you actively seek the truth, and then break your silence.  Sitting by the sidelines is cowardly.  It is hypocritical.  It is not Catholic.  As someone once put it with this quote from Pope St. Felix III: “Not to oppose error is to approve it; and not to defend truth is to suppress it; and indeed to neglect to confound evil men, when we can do it, is no less a sin than to encourage them.”  We, the lay faithful, are not going to accept inaction any more.  We are not going to swallow the SGG swill any longer.  We have sounded the alarm – many times.  Are you listening?  The time has come for you to act – and for some of you, that time is long overdue.