Saturday, November 29, 2014

Starting to Unravel?

Lay Pulpit’s last article talked about the spate of name-dropping that Dannie Dolan did in his Bishop’s Corner in SGG’s November 16 Sunday bulletin.  It seems that our thoughts about this have struck a chord with others as well, for we have received the following correspondence that not only mirrors what we said, but provides some additional examples of Dannie’s name-dropping antics. Name-dropping, of course, is such a sorry business.  It is so cheap, so tawdry, so unconvincing.  It is – at best -- a pretentious and childish way of flaunting one’s self-importance -- even when there’s a grain of truth in it.  But when it’s entirely fictional – as the following will attest -- it is downright self-debasing.  Here is what our correspondent had to say:

As a long-time surveyor of the traditional Catholic landscape in the U.S., I can attest that Father Berry has no affiliation with Dolan, Sanborn, or their clergy.  To my knowledge, he has had no direct contact with them for at least a decade. In view of Dolan’s deceptive phraseology, now may be time to explain the background to Father’s serving as subdeacon in Milwaukee 25 years ago. It will back up what you wrote 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. Father keeps to himself and studiously avoids all the nutty cat-fights that traditional clergy love.

If memory serves, Father left New York in 1983, but returned a couple of times in 1984 to persuade another priest to leave the group. At no time was he a member of SSPV, which did not exist for some years until after he had relocated to another state far away. The “Oyster Bay Cove” gang, which included Dolan and Sanborn, considered him persona non grata and did not speak to him.  One of their big-shots once told two Ohio spinsters that Father was a “Judas” for leaving the group, and, at Cekada’s orders, an attorney in Kansas City removed his name from all legal documents related to the St. Philomena Chapel.

I am certain, then, that Father must have been dumbfounded back in July 1989 when Dolan invited him to assist at the weekday dedication of the chapel. At the time, he did not know that Kelly had expelled both Dolan and Cekada from the SSPV. Therefore, it was Dolan’s isolation that made it necessary to re-establish contact, not a sincere desire for friendship: Dolan needed to impress the lay folk in Milwaukee.

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. He did something like this with a Seattle priest who once left him in a lurch at his Big Pontifical Holiday Show, and he did it to another priest, a severely challenged “poor soul,” whose anti-Dolan chapel was subsequently very irritated about his lunching with the cult leader. The moral of this story is that no good deed goes unpunished.

It is clear from this communication that, as Dannie put it, when “Fr. Berry kindly came in from Denver to make for a Solemn Mass with Fr. Cekada and myself,” Dannie wasn’t motivated by charity, but by self-interest.  The only kindness here was on the part of that priest, who, in spite of the malevolent treatment he suffered at the hands of Dolan and Cekada, repaid their calculated malice with true Christ-like charity – because, unlike they, he was a man of true character.  Dannie and Tony were, true to form, taking advantage of this priest’s charitable nature, and using him to deceive the people in Milwaukee into thinking that they and he were “buddies” – which, as the above communication also makes clear, was not the only instance where Dannie and Tony have tried to use deception to their advantage.

Of course, none of this is surprises us.  But what does surprise us is that someone has actually written us to speak up and mention all these things – someone apparently intimately familiar with what has been going on.  Could it be that the conspiracy of silence that has shielded Dannie up to now is starting to unravel?  Could it be that there are so many revelations coming to light about him, that people are starting to come forward, and that Dannie can no longer “keep the lid on the tea kettle”?

We think so.  Bad deeds can only be kept under wraps for so long.  And the worst part of it for Dannie is that he knows that all of what was said is TRUE – and that it is only the tip of a much bigger iceberg.  And he knows (or, at least, should know) that if he starts trying to play the “denial game” or to challenge any of it (publicly and/or legally), it will only blow up in his face – and that he will lose.  He has only to look at what has been happening lately to the comedian Bill Cosby for proof of that: denial has only led to more people coming forward – and to more revelations being made.  His only real option is to keep a low profile, and to hope that the SGG culties don’t notice (or, if they do, that they don’t care).
Whatever Dannie does from here on, we suggest that he drop “name-dropping” from his repertoire (unless he wants to stick with characters whose views and sentiments more closely reflect his own, such as Grigori Rasputin, Josef Stalin – or someone with a more Dickensian flair, such as Uriah Heep).  We are also sure that he is now heartily sorry for what he did (or didn’t do) back in 2009 (just as a death row inmate is heartily sorry for what he has done).  But will such remorse make him change his ways?  No, it won’t, because it’s the wrong kind of remorse.  Besides, unlike that death-row inmate, Dannie knows he still has an “out” -- his culties: they’ll probably still go on supporting him, no matter what. But for everyone else, this latest display of his chicanery is just one more nail in his coffin.  Whether it’s the taking advantage of that priest, or one of the many other recorded instances of his calculated maliciousness, it has happened simply too many times for the rest of the world not to sit up and take notice.
He is now beginning to reap what he has sown; and, except for his dwindling band of intransigent automatons, his support is fast deteriorating, and his make-believe world is crumbling.  It is ironic that he who has victimized so many should be victimized himself.  But it has been self-inflicted -- by his own words and actions: by his deceitfulness, his arrogance, his lack of charity -- his pride.  He has painted himself into a corner that he cannot get out of, because his nefarious deeds are now too widely known.  Again, his only real option is to keep a low profile – to go somewhere and “hide.”  (Perhaps he can hunker down in the same “hidey-hole” that Dr. Droleskey once suggested for one of his victims -- but which he now seems to be in need of himself.  And if he does, he and Dr. D might want to do a little more “excavation work” on it -- to make room for Tony too.)
But we fear that Dannie will do “none of the above.”  He will continue to stare reality in the face, and to pretend (or make others think) that “all is well” and that he is “at one with the traddie world” -- and that he basks in their whole-hearted camaraderie and support.  But he doesn’t.  He is alone – because he has isolated himself -- and all the pretending in the world won’t change that.  He’s in his own little fantasy world: a world that, despite all of his (and Tony’s) clumsy attempts at deception, is unraveling – and fast. 

Editor’s Note:  This will be Lay Pulpit’s last article until after the Christmas break.  We are taking a “holiday hiatus,” after which we will resume the first Saturday or Sunday in January.  Until then, we wish you a joyful Christmas and New Year!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Dannie’s Name-Dropping Bird-Droppings

Daniel Dolan’s Bishop’s Corner in last week’s SGG Sunday Bulletin was the usual mix of Dolanesque frippery: his opening “weather report” remarks, of course; the token accolades for the cult-slaves who toil behind the scenes to put on “the show”; his almost weekly plug for the “McFathers” (Lurch and McFaker); and allusions to Caravaggio’s latest round of “critter kill” (this time, though, it wasn’t bunnies, but mourning doves) – all glued together with great gobs of sanctimonious pap.  And – oh yes – he got in his usual digs against Bergoglio (and even the Mormons), to keep his letter-of-the-law culties on the “cult-center straight and narrow”; and he also mentioned the upcoming Christmas Craft sale (Dannie always puts in a fund-raiser “plug” to keep the culties mindful of his insatiable need for income).  And lastly – as he is wont to do now and then – he served up a hefty portion of “name dropping.”

One bit of name-dropping that he did was to mention a mission down in Mexicali, whose mentioning – as it turns out – has a Freudian connection with his opening remarks about the weather: he stated that he was not “trembling in anticipation of the dreaded ‘winter vortex.’”  That stated reason for his non-worry was that he was “anticipating with joy” Saint Gertrude’s Day – but his real reason is that he is “anticipating with joy” once again heading south (to Mexicali) this year to escape the “winter blahs.”  (Isn’t it amazing how he always manages to go to warm, sunny Mexico in the winter, and to Europe in the summer?)  The reason he gave for going to Mexicali was that “they say it is unusually hot there most of the year, so I must come in winter, probably February.”  Well, Dannie, since Lent starts on the 18th of that month, you might want to make it late February so that you can take advantage of Mexico’s relaxed Lenten rules again -- and “legally” have your “copious quantities of beef,” as you did last winter.

Dannie, of course, is aware of the bad publicity he got for last year’s “double-dip” trips to Argentina and Mexico, while the sheep back home were conscripted to pay SGG’s “excessive heating bills.”  So, this year, he figured that he had better not only announce his Mexicali plans beforehand, but justify it in his parishioners' eyes by saying that the trip is in response to an invitation from the priests down there -- so as not to make it appear as the “winter getaway” scheme that it is.  And, proffering that pretext, Dannie probably figures that his brain-dead culties will fall for his “Mexicali Ruse,” no matter how counterfeit it looks to the rest of us.

In another part of his name-dropping marathon, Dannie mentioned the following:  “Meanwhile, the McFathers are loading up the car this week with clergy and vestments for St. Hugh’s first 40 Hours ever in celebration of their 25th anniversary of dedication, which actually took place July 18, 1989. Fr. Berry kindly came in from Denver to make for a Solemn Mass with Fr. Cekada and myself” [our italics].  Now one would gather from this passage that this priest’s coming “in from Denver to make for a Solemn Mass with Fr. Cekada and myself” was happening this week (when “the McFathers are loading up their car”).  NOTHING COULD BE FARTHER FROM THE TRUTH.  The “solemn Mass” to which he was referring happened twenty-five years ago, not “this week.” 

Dannie simply wanted to give the impression that the priest was there with him and Checkie this week.  That priest has, in fact, had no known contact (let alone, collaboration) with them for some number of years. What Dannie ought to have done was to insert a “transitional marker,” such as “back then,” so that the passage would have read, “Back then, Fr. Berry kindly came…” etc. – but he didn’t.  Substandard scholar though he is, even Dannie would know to put in that transitional marker, so as not to give the wrong impression; but, again, he didn’t.  He omitted it deliberately.  He wanted the reader to conclude that what he had implied was true (even though much of traddieland already knows that it’s not true).  Indeed, all of the name-dropping that he did that day was to convey the notion that he’s in communion with and universally liked by almost everybody.

This is the sort of cheap parlor trick that Dannie has always tried to pull through the years.  But, coming right on the heels of his latest Lawrence, Massachusetts subterfuge, this latest deception makes him look all the more despicable – and foolish.  But this weasel will never stop.  He can’t help himself.  He will continue to “practice to deceive” – and, like a boomerang, it will always come back to bite him.  One would think that he’d learn his lesson by now -- but he won’t.  He will continue to find new and imaginative ways of embarrassing (and defeating) himself.  His malevolent nature won’t let him do otherwise; it will always come through, blinding him and obliterating his ability to think rationally – and will continue to get him into trouble.  Will he ever change?  No.  It’s in his DNA.

That being said, we suggest, when Dannie hangs up his stocking on the fireplace mantle this St. Nicholas Day, that Tony put in a different “stocking stuffer” this time -- not his perennial bookshelf dust collector (Work of Human Hands), but something more practical: duct tape.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


Isaac Newton’s first law of motion is his Law of Inertia.  One text defines inertia as “the resistance of any physical object to any change in its state of motion, including changes to its speed and direction.”  The word inertia comes from the Latin iners, meaning “idle” or “sluggish.”  Today, the word is used figuratively as well as literally, i.e., it is applied not just to physical objects but to people, where it means resistance to change in ideas or thinking.
And nowhere is this resistance to change more evident than at Daniel Dolan’s southwest Ohio cult center.  Last week’s Lay Pulpit documented just a few of the many examples of Dolan’s (and Cekada’s) scandalous behavior – behavior which, among other things, drove half their congregation away back in 2009.  One would think that this should have driven the entire congregation away – but it didn’t: many ignored the evidence, and stayed.  Why?  Inertia, that’s why: once people’s minds are set on a course, it is very difficult to dislodge them.  And it is easy to set them on that course because people are, by nature, trusting – and, like sheep, most are easily led.  That is why the term pastor is such a good metaphor: it's from the Latin for “shepherd.”  And shepherds they are: where the pastor leads, the congregation usually follows -- especially traddies.

That is why the automatons at SGG not only follow Dannie and Tony, but defend them as well.  That is why they ignore the obvious wrong that they do, and treat them almost as if they were living saints.  Hence, it seems that, in the programming of human nature, inertial gullibility is one of its worst “default settings” -- but it can be overcome.  The way to go about it is to hammer away at it -- slowly, gradually, patiently, and repeatedly: repetition is not only the mother of memory; it is the mother of belief.  That is why we’ve talked so often about Dannie and Tony -- about putting on “the show,” and that what they do is just a caricature of Catholicism, etc.  And we say it not only because we have a moral right to do so, but because it is our moral duty.

It is always a constant source of private amusement to many of us that, when Dannie and Tony slander people, their apologists can ignore their slander; but when someone points out and exposes that slander, they condemn that someone as a slanderer – and they invent all sorts of reasons why tat is so.  Their “favorite,” perhaps, is the “Alter Christus trump card” that they play: one cannot speak out against a priest because he is “another Christ.”  Yet they fail to see that Dannie and Tony have done that very thing several times – and to priests -- priests who have done them no harm.  For these hypocrites, it is okay for Dannie and Tony to do it – but no one else can.

But, more importantly, they also fail to see that, what their cult-masters allege about others, it is just that: allegation – mere assertion -- and NOTHING ELSE.  When Dannie preached his so-called apology” sermon (where he tried to victimize someone else while playing the victim himself), what did he give to back up his allegations?  Nothing.  When he wrote his letter of accusations against a young French priest, what proof or evidence did he have?  None.  When he deputized Thomas Le Gal to slander that other priest mentioned in our last article, what proof was there?  Again, ZERO.  Conversely, anything that we (and others) have said about Dannie and Tony has been documented with real evidence – usually from Dannie’s and Tony’s own mouths.  We have even shown where Dannie and Tony have, with their own words, lied and contradicted each other.

And not only have the dynamic duo been putting their feet in their mouths, but so have their followers.  Perhaps the best example of this was “Introibo” – the intrepid imbecile who challenged Pistrina Liturgica to provide evidence that “One-hand Dan’s” ordination was doubtful.  This gave Pistrina an open invitation to re-examine what had heretofore been accepted as a “closed matter” – and, as a result, the whole traddie world is now aware that Dannie’s orders ARE, in fact, doubtful.  It seems that whenever one of Dannie’s drudges opens his mouth, he swallows a shovelful of hot coals – and Dannie gets skewered.

In their trance-like devotion to the dynamic duo, Dannie’s and Tony’s supporters accuse all who oppose them of being “vengeful” creatures who try to derive some sort of profit from “victimizing” them. But what “vengeful creature” would take the time and trouble to do such a thing -- and what kind of “profit” would he derive?  Did half of SGG’s congregation – including a good, holy man who gave them millions in support – leave out of “vengeance” (or seek any material gain)?  What kind of “profit” did the people of SGG’s satellite parish in Columbus, Ohio derive by having their building fund confiscated and their church sold out from under them?  (And, for that matter, how many of us have a “donate buttons” on our websites?)  In short, who were the victims -- and who were the victimizers -- in all these cases?  The truth is, the overwhelming evidence of material gain, vengeance, and victimizing has been on the SGG clergy’s part, not anyone else’s.

Continued opposition to these lepers, again, is our moral duty.  Not to do so, out of some misguided sense of “not wanting to cause scandal” (as some of traddieland’s clergy have done), is cowardly – and it is wrong.  To quote Pope St. Felix III once more: “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 agree.  We too are not in the business of “encouraging them” – especially those who, as the people of Lawrence, Massachusetts can attest – continue to demonstrate that they have not lost their reptilian touch.  Therefore, that opposition must continue, in the hope that it may one day energize these weak-willed, acquiescent fools to overcome their own inertia – and, just as importantly, that it will deter others from making the same mistake.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Rotten to the Core

The latest (November 1) Pistrina Liturgica article reported about an ordination that recently took place at Sacred Heart Chapel in Lawrence, Massachusetts, and about a certain sede clergyman’s abortive attempt to disrupt that ordination.  It seems that this “clergyman” phoned one their priests, and told him out that the young ordinand lacked the proper seminary formation to become a priest.  Pistrina also pointed out that this chapel is the one where Daniel Dolan ordained(?) another young man who too did not have seminary formation – a man who served that chapel for a time, but subsequently quit it (thus leaving them without a priest) to come and join Dolan's cult center in southwest Ohio.  [The “priest” who quit them was, of course, “Uneven Steven” – the same man who embarrassed himself so badly on Steven Heiner’s Restoration Radio.]

The attempted smearing of the newly-ordained priest prompted Bishop Morello to write a letter defending the young man.  And, of course, Bishop Morello – being a man of true character (unlike the moral leper who tried to discredit the new priest) – had the charity not to mention the slanderer’s name, but only to state that “an ecclesiastic of prominent hierarchy… called a trustworthy priest on the phone, asserting that we would be ordaining a candidate who lacks sufficient formation.”  Now what kind of person would clandestinely call up to question the young man’s credentials – and, by inference, cast doubt on Bishop Morello’s judgment?  What kind of person, not affiliated in any way with that chapel, would be so brazen, so underhanded, as to make unsolicited contact with them in order to disrupt something that was none of his business? 

Well, strange as it may seem, almost exactly the same thing happened a few years back: the day before a man was to be ordained by Bp. Paul Petko, someone contacted Bp. Petko urging him not to ordain the man.  This “someone” was one of SGG’s out-of-town frequenters – a man to whom Daniel Dolan recently referred as his “honorary Gertrudian.”  Concurrent with that, rumors were also being spread, discrediting Bp. Petko himself.  Now one could make a case that this “honorary Gertrudian” acted “on his own,” and was not deputized to do so by the southwest Ohio cult-masters -- or that those rumors were also none of their doing.  But one could also make a case that the Easter Bunny is for real.  Whatever the case, none of these efforts were to any avail: that ordination, just like the one in Massachusetts, went off without a hitch.  The only thing that the perpetrators managed to accomplish by their clumsy efforts was to provide proof of their involvement.

Are there any other instances of characters being attacked or discredited, other than this?  You bet there are!  Perhaps one of the "cheapest shots” was Anthony Cekada’s discrediting of a deceased man (who therefore couldn’t defend himself): the late Abbot Leonard Giardina.  In a May, 2011 article, Cekada had this to say about the recently-deceased abbot: 
“Fr. Giardiana was studiously coy about revealing his position on the question of the pope. As far as I know, he never made any public statements one way or the other.”  Cekada then continued: “Father’s caginess on the pope question and his repeated ‘We’re-too-spiritual-for-controversies’ protests, though, struck me as nothing more than a clever two-pronged fundraising ploy:  (1) Say absolutely nothing about the pope, so you can hit up all categories of traditionalists for donations: sedevacantists, SSPX-ers, independents, and Motu types.  (2) Play up the ‘I’m-only-a-humble-unworldly-monk’ routine.  On the latter point, having spent some time as a monk myself, I am well aware how some of the sons of St. Benedict ham up the ‘humble monk’ shtick whenever they sniff the scent of a potential big benefactor.  The double formula was a gold mine for Christ the King Abbey. Fr. Giardina played it to the hilt, and the bucks rolled in.”

Needless to say, Tony’s comments were anything but complimentary.  But, as cheap a shot as they were, his boss Dannie Dolan took an even cheaper one that made Tony’s remarks look downright innocuous.  In a letter to the people of Chambéry (in southeastern France), Derogatory Dan totally slammed a young French priest – and even his parents.  If one reads this letter, the venomous bias is embarrassingly obvious.  Of course, this isn’t the first time Dannie has done such a thing.  He also did the same to that priest ordained by Bp. Petko – and for the same “crime”: administering to the people of Chambéry.  But this time, he did it by “deputy”: he had Fr. Thomas Le Gal do the dirty deed for him, calling this priest a “destroyer,” amongst other things. 

This “destroyer,” by the way, was the same priest who, in his pre-ordination days, was a teacher at SGG; and, because he was a foreign national, his “papers” were supposed to have been “taken care of” by Anthony Cekada.  Not only did Cekada NOT do that, but – because the man opposed the scandalous events of 2009 at SGG’s school -- he had him subsequently dismissed from SGG – after which he turned him in to Homeland Security in an effort to get him deported.  But, like the cartoon character Wile E. Coyote, all of Tony’s efforts came to naught: the man is now a practicing priest, safely back in the U.S.

Now the reason for recalling these instances of the SGG clergy’s past behavior – all of which are easily verified -- is to examine them again, in light of what recently happened in Lawrence, Massachusetts.  Concerning that, in his letter defending the newly ordained priest, Bp. Morello disclosed only that “an ecclesiastic of prominent hierarchy [our emphasis] called a trustworthy priest on the phone, asserting that we would be ordaining a candidate who lacks sufficient formation.”  Now it is safe to say that an “ecclesiastic of prominent hierarchy” is probably NOT a priest -- nor is he an archbishop or above (because there are none of that rank in traddieland these days).  That leaves – you guessed it – “bishop.” 

Now, let us pose the following questions:  First, how many traddie bishops are there who have -- or had -- an earlier interest in (or association with) Sacred Heart Chapel?  Secondly, now that SHC has their new priest, who is it that will no longer benefit from any such past association -- or be able to take control of their chapel?  Thirdly, who is it that might now see that chapel as a “rival”?  And lastly, who has a track record of discrediting people whom they consider rivals, or whom they perceive as “threatening their turf”?  Now it is theoretically possible that this mysterious “ecclesiastic of prominent hierarchy” could be any one of traddieland’s bishops.  But, unfortunately for this “ecclesiastic,” news of it leaked out, so the “mystery” is solved -- and it is fast becoming traddieland’s “worst kept secret.”

Now this ecclesiastic’s supporters might “cry foul” and blame Bp. Morello for divulging his identity -- but he DID NOT (nor was he party to any such undertaking).  No, the blame goes entirely to that “ecclesiastic” himself, for how could he ever think that such a deed would go unnoticed?  News like that invariably spreads.  And the truth is, it deserved and needed to be spread.  And the truth also is that, whether or not this ecclesiastic’s name was actually mentioned, it didn’t have to be: people simply asked themselves who might do such a thing, and then “put two an two together.”  For anyone other than an absolute moron, it was an easy deduction.

Of course, this ecclesiastic’s supporters will probably blame everyone outside their sphere (including us) for even mentioning that he had made that phone call to SHC.  They'll probably call the reporting of the deed "slander" -- as if the deed itself wasn't --  and they'll fail to blame this ecclesiastic himself.  They'll fail to admit that what he did was indefensible and was EVIL – and they'll fail to see that their pharisaic cries of "slander" do not alter or diminish that deed itself, or justify it.  They'll also fail to blame themselves for not facing up to the obvious maliciousness of his act, just as they have failed to do so many times in the past.  And why?  Pride, that’s why: pure, simple, “never-admit-that-they’re-wrong” pride – and cowardice.

These folks, it seems, will never face up to reality; but, perhaps, they will.  The rest of traddieland HAS wised up.  For them, this latest episode at SHC is just one more "nail in the coffin" that has already destroyed whatever little esteem (and credibility) this “ecclesiastic” has left.  And even for this “ecclesiastic’s” gullible followers, the sheer underhandedness of his act cannot help but be recognized – if only a little.  And recognition, like a leak in a dike, often starts out as a trickle -- but becomes a torrent.  Perhaps this trickle has started for some of them; or perhaps it will the next time.  And, rest assured, there will be a “next time,” because this vindictive wretch will never change -- or quit.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Who Are You Trying to Kid, Donny?

Some years back, one of the bible-thumping TV evangelists – Oral Roberts -- told a TV audience that, unless he raised $8 million by that March, God would “call him home.”  Well, we’re happy to report that “Brother Roberts” did not die.  But his cheap, shameless plea DID.  In his greed, Roberts thought that his obsequious followers would respond to such extortion – but they didn’t.  It seems there was a limit to even their gullibility.  His shameless ruse, in the long run, probably cost him more than the support he was seeking – but such are the wages of greed.

Now one would think that such mercenary ploys are a thing of the past – but are they?  Just this past month, the rector of Florida’s MHT Seminary has been whistling the same sort of tune.  Donald Sanborn, who has been hinting for some time about “expansion,” had this to say in his latest Newsletter:  “The seminary is at its absolute capacity this year. At this writing, we cannot take anyone else. We will not ordain anyone until June of 2016, when two are slated for sacred orders. Things may change by the end of this academic year, but already we have to raise the idea of adding on an addition to this seminary.  We also need to address the expanding costs of the seminary as the number of seminarians expands.”  “It is absolutely necessary,” he continues, “for the survival of Catholicism during this Modernist crisis that this seminary continue to function. If the lay people are to preserve their Catholic Faith, they will need well-trained Catholic priests. If they do not have them, they will sink into error, heresy, and moral corruption.”

First off -- as Pistrina pointed out – if seminary-trained priests are necessary for “the survival of Catholicism,” then why did Big Don have a priest with no seminary formation accompany him to Europe, when he had his pick of several seminary-trained priests to take along?  But, even laying that argument aside, one might also ask another question: why is “expansion” really necessary?  According to MHT’s September newsletter, the seminary currently houses eleven seminarians. Looking at the facility (click here), it is hard to imagine that it can accommodate only that many.  Even a conservative estimate puts the under-roof square footage at more than 12,000 (not including the church and the front structures flanking it on either side) – over 1000 sq. ft. per seminarian.  That is about the same square footage as the average three-bedroom home.  Even allowing for classrooms (and for Big Don and his faculty staff of three), MHT’s campus is an extravagantly huge complex for a student body of that size.

Why is it that a single seminarian needs that much room to live?  It is reported that each MHT seminarian has own room with its own private full bath.  Compare that with the average traddie family who lives in that three-bedroom home, where six (or more) people typically share one or two baths.  [In some cases, traddie families of ten or more have had to share a single bathroom.]  Now Donny, tell us again, why is it that you expect those folks to do that, but not your seminarians?  Why is it that, what you routinely expect your parishioners to do, your seminarians cannot do?  Why is it “absolutely necessary for the survival of Catholicism” that each seminarian have a private room (with bath) to himself? 

Besides, we hear that -- of late -- “capacity” is not really that big of an issue.  Rumor has it, “as of this writing,” that the seminary is NOT “at its absolute capacity this year”: that one of your French seminarians – after three years at MHT -- has bolted, and that another is contemplating doing the same.  More importantly, whether the rumors are true or not, it is ludicrous to claim that physical expansion is a prerequisite for “the survival of Catholicism.”  Donny, you are beginning to sound more and more like Oral Roberts.  Is God going to “call you home” if you don’t get your way?  Is Catholicism going to perish, or “sink into error, heresy, and moral corruption,” if you don’t get your “expansion”? 

We think not.  The truth is, Big Don is once again blowing smoke.  Like those TV preachers, he is an empire builder consumed with his own self-importance.  And, like Oral Roberts, he is overreaching his step in his greed.  If the presence of “well-trained priests” were really necessary “for the survival of Catholicism,” how then is it (as one of Pistrina’s readers pointed out) that Japan’s Catholics survived for over two hundred years without a SINGLE “well-trained priest”?  How is it that they did not  “sink into error, heresy, and moral corruption”?  Yet how is it that SGG, which (supposedly) DID have “well-trained priests” (from Big Don’s Florida puppy mill), lost half its parish to scandal back in 2009?

But even if they did have well-trained priests (which they don’t), Big Don -- like Dannie -- is not interested in well-trained priests, but in providing a cushy life for himself.  He and Dannie are cut from the same mold: both like to put on elaborate “pontifical pageantry,” both like to go on expensive “apostolates,” and both are connoisseurs (and collectors) of expensive ecclesiastical trinkets.  In short, they both crave la dolce vita – and both are everlastingly asking their followers to donate to their respective financial sinkholes.  And, coincidentally, both have lost their biggest benefactors: Donny’s, who underwrote both his Michigan and Florida operations, stopped bankrolling him some years ago; and Dannie’s biggest benefactor took his money and ran after the 2009 SGG school scandals.  Such are the wages of greed.

Big Don’s complex in Florida, like those “crystal cathedrals” of the TV preachers, is just another bastion of hucksterism and hypocrisy.  And, like Dolan’s SGG, it’s a caricature of Catholicism, designed to impress -- and exploit -- the gullible.  Both Donny and Dannie try their best to scare people into believing that they’re “the only game in town” – but their histrionics are starting to wear thin.  Many are now seeing them for what they are: a bunch of “ecclesiastically challenged” amateurs, dressed up in fancy digs, who really don’t know what they’re doing (as “Uneven Steven,” Donny’s latest “darling of the moment,” so embarrassingly demonstrated recently on Restoration Radio).  They're starting to see that the MHT-SGG consortium is nothing more than a bunch of pompous parasites who are impressing -- and kidding -- NOBODY.