The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #90

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“Spiritual Evolution

“Some of the foundational ideas of the women religious seem to be connected to the work of Teilhard de Chardin S. J. (work which stresses the evolutionary nature of matter and spirit) and with his ideas being more accepted by the Church in recent years—he was prohibited from publishing while he was alive—it gives some concreteness, especially in the minds of women religious, to their own ideas.

“While examining the ideas and strategies of the dissenting women religious—and we use the word dissenting advisedly as there can be found scriptural validation of their position, especially in:

“[Galatians 3:27] All you who have been baptized in Christ’s name have put on the person of Christ; [28] no more Jew or Gentile, no more slave and freeman, no more male and female; you are all one person in Jesus Christ.”

“We definitely have to take into account the absolutely vile history of humankind in its treatment of women, still being practiced in all too many countries; and in the development of feminist theology within the Catholic Church and without, we have to give it the same level of personhood’s determinative final value (very little) as we do to the corrupted social/familial structures within which many criminals grew up, blaming that on why they became criminals.

“That structural brutality and oppression of women was, and is, still true, is horrific and tragic; but once adulthood is reached and it becomes time to put away childish things, even the bad ones, we all, through dedicated prayer and studying of the essential earthly goodness and divine birth of our Church, can learn that our true human nature is to know and love God and that knowing and that loving is most completely discovered through the sacramental life of the Roman Catholic Church.

“Everything sound the Church teaches stands on reason which even the laity understand, but when they no longer understand, it is no longer believed, and for decades now, many Catholics have accepted women as having the standing to become priests; and had women been priests, there would very possibly not have been a world-wide scandal of sexually abused children.

“This issue is one sapping the passion of the Church; the unwillingness to acknowledge the reasonableness and rightness of women priests as the kind of change that will rekindle the eternal fire of the pilgrim Church and restrengthen the barque of Peter.

“Mea culpas are demanded, yes, but penance is healthy, as healthy for the Church as for its members.

“As the Holy Father has sought forgiveness from the Jews so should he seek it from women and it will be given in a mighty wave washing though Holy Mother Church with Pentecostal power.

“More Papal Perspectives

“The mantra of the three popes, John Paul, Benedict and Francis, has been that the issue is one not even open to discussion anymore; though from Women in Canon Law in 1975 by the Canon Law Society of America, through Decree on the Attempted Priestly Ordination of Some Catholic Women in 2002 by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and the 26 other documents from either the Vatican, the U.S. Bishop’s Conference, Catholic Orders like the Jesuits, or Catholic Theological Societies, it has been discussed continuously; summaries of which are included in the magisterial book by Halter (2004), The Papal No: A Comprehensive Guide to the Vatican’s Rejection of Women’s Ordination.

“One gets the distinct impression that what the popes are really saying is that they do not wish to discuss this issue any longer, as the longer it is discussed the more feeble the reasoning for denying women the priesthood becomes:

  • Christ called only men, but he also called only Jews
  • Christ incarnated as a man, but how else would he incarnate as in first century Israel women barely existed in any legal sense and surely even less in a religious sense.
  • Women are inferior, an idiocy made even more idiotic in the 20th century and beyond.
  • Christ as groom of the Church as bride, a theological argument hardly relevant, ever, in the context that Christ is Almighty God, creator of all things, neither man nor woman, both man and woman.
  • It is tradition, but supporting slavery was also a Church tradition for millennia, but as social conditions changed, it changed. 

“Sexual Abuse in the Church

“We have to wonder how much the news of the purported homosexual lobby within the Vatican plays in the lack of willingness to continue the discussion of women as priests.

“To obtain more depth on this subject, accessing two magisterial works on it: The Rite of Sodomy: Homosexuality and the Roman Catholic Church by Randy Engel, and Sacrilege: Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church by Leon J. Podles, both devout Catholics, provides that.

“Reading these books is a horrifying walk in the sewer—especially painful for Catholics—but a vital walk to understand what has happened in the Church, not only in the present, but for centuries, which Engels book covers, while Podles book focuses on the modern scandal in the United States. 

“Mary Parker Follett

“Isn’t the noosphere—the concept Teilhard de Chardin learned from Russian scientist Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky and Christianized—the global vision of Mary Parker Follett’s dream of group evolution, where every blogger, internet commenter and twitter tweeter contributes to the electronic internet group shaping our new reality.

“One of the characteristics of the recent struggle between the women religious of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) and the Vatican, is that it is a classic case of group negotiating as studied by Mary Parker Follett who felt human definitions, human’s highest selfhood, came from working within a group, not alone as individuals.

“Both groups—the LCWR and the Vatican—operate from a group formed psychology, but only that of the women moves and grows as Follett had hoped, while the Vatican, the papacy and attendant cardinals/bishops move in lockstep according to a matrix established—as it claims—at the beginnings of the Church, yet words, ideas and events also established at the beginnings of the Church counteract the locksteps, taking the ground from beneath their feet, the most powerful being, again:

“[Galatians 3:25]: When faith comes, then we are no longer under the rule of a tutor; [26] through faith in Christ Jesus you are all now God’s sons. [27]All you who have been baptized in Christ’s name have put on the person of Christ; [28] no more Jew or Gentile, no more slave and freeman, no more male and female; you are all one person in Jesus Christ. [29] And if you belong to Christ, then you are indeed Abraham’s children; the promised inheritance is yours.”  

“This is such a clarion call.

“The saddest result of Follett’s exclusion because she was a women, from the canon of management thinkers during her life and after was the loss of her vision added to the body of work—virtually all by men—taught in the academy.

“What she specialized in was retaining the emotional content of individual lives in the rather dry and objectified writings of male management theorists; but it was not to be until decades later, when men—most of who were influenced by her writings—began introducing the personalist perspective.

“Follett also pioneered the concept of power-with rather than power-over.

“This is the model of the archetypical loss of women’s collaborative leadership the Catholic Church has been suffering from for 2,000 years, but over the past few decades Catholic feminist theologians have been challenging and changing it.

“Fr. Teilhard

“In my opinion, because of the depth and breadth of Fr. Teilhard’s theological speculations, it will be some time before the Church properly understands him and gives him his earned position in her universe of Doctors of the Church; but as much as St. Thomas Aquinas’ thought determined the medieval Church, and guides her still; Fr. Teilhard’s thought will shape and guide her in the future; but it could be a century or so before he is finally and deeply appreciated.

“Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI understood Teilhard’s immense value to Catholic theological thinking today, commenting on Johannine theology about Christ drawing all things to himself:

“[John 12:30] Jesus answered, It was for your sake, not for mine, that this utterance was made. [31] Sentence is now being passed on this world; now is the time when the prince of this world is to be cast out. [32] Yes, if only I am lifted up from the earth, I will attract all men to myself. [33]  (In saying this, he prophesied the death he was to die.)”

“Fr. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J. was one of the most extraordinary Catholic thinkers of the modern age; but, he was also a man of action as indicated by the list of citations from his war service as a medical orderly in World War I, one of which was the highest medal awarded by France, the National Order of the Legion of Honour in May of 1921.

“In addition to the luminosity of his theological writings and his war record, he was also an eminent scientist.

“If the Catholic Church is the Universal Church—though how can it be while subjugating women–how can unbelievers ever believe and believers continue to believe.

“As the Church embraced the Mother Goddess of Mesoamerica, so the Church embraced pagan gods and their modern expressions: Freud/Jungian psychoanalysis, but all too often the Church has lost the passion of those they embraced.

“The Catholic Church, so long the center of education, has become the center of rules; so long the center of scientific creativity, has become stale; so long a center of ministry, has become the home of clericalism.

“All of these are natural human tendencies, to regulate, to stagnate, to negate.

“Fr. Teilhard shows us a different vision of evolutive learning on a Thomist foundation, embracing science and reason through the synthesis of spirit and matter.

“God created all, but God’s crowning creation is human beings—men and women—who, through their growth and evolution grow and evolve God.

“The idea that God is within all, all matter and all spirit, is not a new idea.” (p. 437-443)

Be well everyone, and pray the old school rosary in the old school way, see

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #89

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“The Jesuits

“Nowhere does the break between conservative and liberal Catholicism appear more disastrous than when reflecting upon this seminal issue of women in the Church.

“Where the conservative popes proclaim women becoming priests an issue not even worth any more discussion, the Jesuits, in their 34th General Congregation, devoted special attention to women as equal partners in collaboration within Jesuit Ministry.

“The Jesuit Pope Francis followed the lead of other popes in proclaiming his position regarding women as priests, as not being open to discussion.

“And one wonders, how is something that is “not open to discussion” resonating within the world of women who are Catholics and women perhaps thinking of becoming Catholic?

“There is no denying that the humble Pope Francis has changed some people’s opinions of the Catholic Church for the better, but for many in the Western world, there’s still the question of female equality in the Vatican. Namely, why can’t women be priests, too, and how is it resonating within the minds of everyone who is Catholic and has thought through the issue—reading the pros and cons—on their own?


“There are many convoluted theories accounting for woman’s oppression throughout history and each of them that I have read have some element of truth to them; but regardless, it is obvious that women, virtually one half of the human family, have been—virtually across the global and historical board—treated as second-class citizens at best and as virtual slaves at worst; even too often, all too often, within first-class societies and including within the two major religions, Catholicism and Islam.

“Personal Aside #3

“I had largely forgotten the women’s movement, what I had learned about it and believed during the Sixties—other than noting the horrors of the oppression of women internationally within the third world; as the status of women in America seemed approaching parity on a steady upward trajectory—it was generally assumed we would soon have a women president.

“It is now obvious to me that it is time—it is past time—that the Catholic Church once again open the process of study, prayer and reflection that will surely lead to a dramatic increase of women in Catholic leadership at the highest levels, including ordination as priests.

“This is what should have happened—much evidence says did happen—from the beginning days of the Church, and one can only dream of the difference this would have made in the world where the most organized institution in the Western world gave full equality to women; and how would this have impacted the deep historical subjugation of women that even now inflicts too much of the Eastern world.

“I reached this conclusion after several months of study and as I continued my studies of women religious in the Church, the time came to begin examining the opposing views as I have always found it imperative to research the thought leaders on each side of an argument—the devil’s advocate—important to me. Since I have already been doing so on the hierarchical Church position for some time—at least in terms of general Church teaching—I ventured to do so on the position of the women religious and accessed several crucial works about the issue

“One of the most important organizing events for women’s ordination was the Women’s Ordination Conference of 1975 in Detroit.

“It was there that the current movement towards women’s ordination truly took on an organized and focused nature.

“Personal Aside #4

“As I began reading the Catholic feminist material I realized again, that of all the liberation movements, that of women was the mother of them all; and as I read about the seminal liberation movement in relation to the Catholic Church, from the perspective of women religious, I realized how right they are, more, how right both positions are.

“Women have been oppressed within the Church since Genesis and they are right to struggle against it, and the Church is right to struggle to protect Church tradition, but the Church must ultimately bow to reason, the benchmark of truth.

“Two seminal women of the West whose secular writing captured my attention in this regard were Mary Parker Follett and Simone de Beauvoir, whose magisterial work, The Second Sex, must be read in its unabridged edition, translated by Constance Borde and Sheila Malovany-Chevallier, published by Alfred A, Knopf in 2012.

“More about Follett later.

“Fr. Teilhard & Joseph Campbell

“The connection Teilhard de Chardin made between Catholicism and evolution is obvious almost a century later; that spirit and matter evolve, that they converge, that we are our body and soul.

“Free will is the determinative factor. Free will explains the oft appearing herky jerky movement that is actually ascension, and it is so with the women in the Church, who will someday, as Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes so eloquently puts it in the title of her book: Untie the Strong Woman, become true partners on earth, physically and spiritually.

“We are part of the convergence of Joseph Campbell’s mythicness and Teilhard’s mysticism.

“We can see a convergence of the Wise Woman and the Holy Father and when we do see that convergence, our children will rejoice.

“What Campbell called myth, is, for us, religious truth, the highest truth; but in his search for meaning and the journey to truth, he sparked deep conversations among non-religious about the truth of myth, for in the great stories from the mythical traditions of the world, lay clear truths, universal truths, that have been gathered and embroidered into a wondrous tapestry under the rubrics Christ gave us.

“Before Christ, the Jews were the Church and after Christ the Catholics were the Church; yet both are and will forever remain, the People of God.

“Personal Aside #5

“What is becoming clear to me after all the research is that the patterns of thought and action within the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) reflects decades of practice within many of the communities of women religious that is based on a feminism that is itself based on years of feminist scholar’s research that leads to conclusions which will probably not be changed at a personal level, conclusions which are deeply embedded.

“In every paradigm change I have experienced, there has often been an intellectual hinge, an idea that answers the chaos of the past, creating a future unity.

“In my conversion to Catholicism it was the scripture from Matthew:

“[Matthew 16:18]: And I tell thee this in my turn, that thou art Peter, and it is upon this rock that I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it;”

“In my coming to believe in the rightness of women priests, it was the response to: “Christ only selected men as apostles”, yes, but he also only selected Jews.

“Papal Perspectives

“The discussion around women’s ordination has been intense and even more so in the year of the 20th annual anniversary of one of the seminal papal documents, the Apostolic Letter, Ordinatio Sacerdotalis, On Reserving Priestly Ordination to Men Alone, by Pope John Paul II (1994).

“With all due respect to John Paul II whose writings and papacy played a major role in my conversion, the reason exhibited in this Apostolic Letter is very weak: that Christ only chose men and the Church has maintained that tradition and the consistency of that teaching authority.

“This is actually only one reason, Christ chose only men, with the other two merely practice of the first.

“Yes, Christ only selected men to be apostles; and the response from women religious, yes, but he also only selected Jews, and no one is saying that only Jews can become priests.

“Sometimes the most elaborate edifice falls from the weakness of one rock; and sometimes an eternal cathedral is built upon the strength of one rock.

“Patriarchy in the Catholic Church is so accepted that Pope Francis recently accused Eve of dialoguing with the devil rather than choosing to follow the word of God, but, when we read the Bible about this episode:

“[Genesis 3:1]: Of all the beasts which the Lord God had made, there was none that could match the serpent in cunning. It was he who said to the woman, What is this command God has given you, not to eat the fruit of any tree in the garden?  [2] To which the woman answered, We can eat the fruit of any tree in the garden [3] except the tree in the middle of it; it is this God has forbidden us to eat or even to touch, on pain of death. [4] And the serpent said to her, What is this talk of death? [5] God knows well that as soon as you eat this fruit your eyes will be opened, and you yourselves will be like gods, knowing good and evil.” 

“We see that Eve did not dialogue with the devil but repeated the instruction the Lord gave her; but Satan lied to her and told her she would not die, and she believed him, which caused her moment of weakness, leading to the Original Sin, humans acting from their free will.

“The concept that Eve—women—are weak and more subject to sin than men is so normative within the Church, even simple daily comments reinforce it, incorrectly as in this case.” (p. 431-436)

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #88

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“St. Catherine of Siena

“St. Catherine, one of two women Doctors of the Church, was a powerful mystic, member of the third order of the Dominicans, who only lived for 33 years (March 25, 1347 – April 29, 1380) but who, in her short life, exerted profound political influence during a time of turmoil in the Church where the popes reigned from Avignon, France; but she was able to influence Pope Gregory XI to return to Rome, cultivated by the revelations of St. Bridget of Sweden.

“In St. Catherine of Siena we have an example of a woman who was arguably more of a pope in spirit than Pope Gregory XI, who she essentially told to man up and get thee back to Rome from France; and he did.

“Yes, St. Catherine of Siena is a Doctor of the Church and one of the most powerful and influential Catholic religious leaders during the chaotic 14th century.

“During the Middle Ages, religion was the only sector of society in which a woman, other than royalty, could exert a powerful influence on world affairs and Catherine was part of that.

“St. Catherine was a woman who was clearly able to be a priest, bishop, cardinal, or pope; and when a child, she dreamed of running away, putting on boys clothes and becoming a priest.


“Women as chattels, as property of men and without virtually any rights at all, was accepted doctrine within the Church and throughout society until relatively a short time ago and is, even now, accepted religious dogma inscribed into law within much of the Islamic world.

“In the Western world, women as co-equal with men has become the norm, and though still too often aligned with more in theory than practice, it has been intellectually established, solidly, that women can do virtually anything involved with being a priest as can men.

“One of the central aspects of Catholic tradition which attracted me to the Church was its openness to anyone and walking the talk—acting on its words—especially around slavery and abortion, both of which the Church has condemned throughout its history, at least, as the orthodox histories I had read at that time, stated.

“Further study uncovered the Bull Romanus Pontifex of Pope Nicholas V (1455, January 8), which changed my mind and left no doubt about papal support for slavery.

“We see in this the split of knowledge, between the average Catholic and between those who study or live the issues, and in the ministry to criminals, the ministry will have to come down on the side of those who study, for the criminals will study to see why they should forgo a narrative that matches their vision of the world enabling them to, in good conscience, be criminals.

“Unfortunately, as with all human institutions, even within the Catholic Church founded by God, confusion and contradiction will reign more often than not, though in the balance, the Church stands strong as walking the talk more than any other earthly institution throughout her more than 2,000 years of history.

“Fr. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

“About a hundred years ago a French Jesuit, Fr. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, began thinking and writing about a grand vision he had regarding Christ and Evolution; a vision so advanced that the Vatican theologians of the time could scarcely understand nor begin to embrace it—though some prominent theologians such as Henri de Lubac, S.J., whose books about Teilhard are an excellent introduction to his work, certainly did—and forbade him from publishing his writing during his lifetime; he died in 1955.

“Slowly however, after his death, as his work began to see the light of day, the Catholic theologians caught up, led by de Lubac, and eventually even the popes realized how profound his work was and how much it would change the mind of the Church.

“For a time, his actual faith was questioned through the complexity and speculative nature of his work, something which even happened to St. Thomas Aquinas for a time.

“One root he helped plant, the clerical reevaluation of women from repository of sin and a dangerous being to be feared to a sister devoutly to be embraced, will someday lead to the creation of women priests, I am sure of it, I pray for it.

“And so it is with the chastity of the Church, true chastity lies on the other side of women becoming priests-bishops-cardinals-popes, beyond fearing them.

“It is so clear that women have been acting functionally as priests in the Catholic Church in the past and should be now, that the circular arguments the institutional Church makes to justify not allowing women into the priesthood are an intellectual and moral embarrassment, virtually rendering Vatican pronouncements on any issue more suspect than they should be.

“Evolution of matter and spirit—the work of humans co-creates future reality with God—marks a defining aspect of women in the Church, and where once it did signify virgin and mother, now, in an industrial and technological world reality co-created by God and humans, it no longer suffices; and as the Church ultimately accepted the sun’s centrality in the solar system rather than the earths, it is past time to move away from the centrality of men to the Church, to a mutual and collaborative centrality of men and women, where each can become, priest, bishop, pope.

“Ah, the evolution of all, of which human consciousness plays such an important role—imagine the human experience being synthesized from the super-rich in sixty million-dollar penthouses in Hong Kong and Manhattan to busted-out homeless in Bowery corners and Brazilian favelas.

“Every truth is His truth, the great convergence which draws all to Christ, as Fr. Teilhard taught us, and a truth still needing to be drawn to Christ’s Vicar on earth is the truth of women’s equality in all things, now and forever more; a great truth calling for women in the priesthood, women in the Curia, women on the papal throne; for as the Mother of God looks over us, and as Magdalene, Apostle to the Apostles and the closest companion of God on earth, has revealed to us, women are truly created in the image of God.

“This is the connection between women in the Church and Fr. Teilhard de Chardin, that he, of all the male Catholic theologians I have read, best explains the optimal relationship between the Church and women.

“The feminist movement in the West is over a hundred years old. Embracing the feminine as Teilhard envisioned within the Church is not yet realized, but today, May 18, 2016 as I write, there are signs that Pope Francis will establish a commission to examine women becoming deacons.

“The work from two doctors of the Church—one future, Teilhard, one present, Catherine of Sienna—are a cornerstone of evolution and faith upon which the future of Church practice will be built; embracing the theology of Teilhard, who has understood and explained the Cosmic Christ, and Catherine who was—in practice—priest and pope during her fullest moments on earth.

“Teilhard explains the evolution of matter, spirit and Catholic teaching; Catherine lived it.

“We pray the Church will soon embrace her wisest daughters and sons.

“Descent of Aquinas, Ascent of Teilhard   

“During the early half of the 20th Century there was a deep renewal of Thomism—the foundational and intellectual floor of Catholicism for centuries now—within the Church, led by the papal magisterium and lay Catholic thinkers like the stunningly devout and talented couple, Jacques & Raissa Maritain, whose work had a great impact on my conversion and Catholic becoming; and during the same period, a great wave of deep—though foundational shaking—and mystical theology emanated from the Jesuit Father Teilhard de Chardin which so confused the Vatican that the Church restricted his writings.

“Then the bottom dropped out for Thomism.

“The ascent of Teilhardism has actually been going on for some time, sometimes even when the Catholic theologian is unaware of it.

“The encyclical of Pope Francis, Laudato Si, is the first papal encyclical I am aware of that mentions the work of Teilhard, as the Holy Father does in n. 53.

“The central element in Teilhard’s thought, in my understanding of it, is the evolutionary growth, of the entire universe—spiritual and material—towards the ultimate end, the Universal Christ, when the love that defines God, infuses all, and all are conscious of it, all are conscious of being part of everything, yet still singular, still individual.

“Within the Church, this spiritual evolution is recorded within the magisterium, primarily that of Peter and the saints, where we see the halting—sometimes two steps backwards for each forward—progress of the Pilgrim Church as she struggles through time and space, struggles with the world and the kingdom of heaven, each joined to one another, each evolving and adding to the consciousness of humans and God, within which we grow to convergence.

“This vision first entranced me in prison over 50 years ago, and Teilhard’s Catholicism was immaterial against the solidity of his vision; then when I became Catholic, it all came together; and when I studied Aquinas, it came together at an even deeper level, for Aquinas, in his synthesizing of the science of Aristotle with second millennium “Catholicism was a necessary prelude to Teilhard and his synthesizing of third millennium Catholicism and evolutionary science.

“Aquinas and Teilhard both synthesize faith and science, and in that respect, what appears to be a descent of the former and ascent of the latter is just a continuation, an evolution, an expansion, and a convergence of Catholic consciousness.

“Personal Aside #2

“I am a Catholic convert baptized into the Church in 2004, am decidedly conservative, preferring the Latin Mass and the Church as seen by St. Thomas Aquinas, Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI, and Pope Francis; I came into the Church after studying the works of and attending meetings with, Opus Dei; but have a life background that created many of my ideas in the 1960s American ferment.

“All this being said, I find myself going against that Catholic tradition in the matter of women as priests and now fully believe they should be.

“I have been following the Church pronouncements on this for some time but haven’t really thought about it till now and as I read and think and write I am changing.

“My heart tells me that women are equal to men in all things that priests do.” (p. 424-431)

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #87

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“St. Mary Magdalene

“One of the cornerstones of the argument that only men can be priests comes from the documentation of the facts on the ground during Christ’s ministry on earth, where the Church has consistently maintained that the leader of the apostles was Peter and it was upon him that the Church was built by Christ and because only men were chosen as apostles, only men can be ordained as priests.

“I cannot see how God approves the unequal status of women which the world has proclaimed since time immemorial.

“And though it is generally agreed by practicing theologians, that the conflating of the three Marys is what led to the tradition that Mary Magdalene was a prostitute, theologians today separate them.

“I still believe in the tradition of the Magdalene as a prostitute, as it resonates with me, and more fully resonates with the scriptures as now canonized; and even the long attempt to separate her from prostitution seems an attempt to take away the power of penance in flowering the power of apostleship or Church leadership and the model of penance Christ conferred upon Magdalene seems unearned if she was merely a sinner, as all are, rather than a great sinner, a criminal sinner, a predatory sinner, a whore.

“Many women theologians want her to have not been a prostitute as they see that as disempowering her, but Magdalene, having been a prostitute, or more accurately, a grand courtesan whose lovers were men of power and privilege who were deeply captured by her exotic appearance and erotic potency; possessed dual powers from her sinful life which gave her, in her penitential life, apostolic authority.

“Mary Magdalene was the magnificently penitential woman who was the apostle to the apostles, called so by Christ, so clearly endorsed by his appearing to her first after his resurrection and by commissioning her to go tell the apostles that he had arisen; assuming the status of first among the apostles.” (pp. 423-424)

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #86

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“Personal Aside #1

“Being a man and writing about women in the Church is suspect and though I also have been marginalized due to my criminal/carceral status, my marginalization is self-inflicted, while that of women is a fact of birth and historic teaching in the Church that women are the source of sin in the world

“The reason I never fully connected with the various religions I studied prior to becoming Catholic (Mormonism, New Age, Protestantism, and Judaism) is that, upon study—their theology, their morality, their practice—broke down into contradiction and irrationality.

“What attracted and held me within the Catholic Church was that the deeper I dug, the deeper I studied, the sounder, more beautiful, and more logical her theology, morality, and practice became.

“My path to the Catholic Church was an intellectual one; everything had to eventually align with reason, and this will be true within the ministries to the criminal/carceral world of the professional criminal: those who commit crimes for money and have made a conscious decision to live as a criminal based on the belief that the world is built upon criminality and one is either prey or predator.

“As I begin this study, I realize that, in many ways, this is the most significant study I’ve authored because it deals with the oldest oppression of human upon human, that of the man upon the woman.” (p. 423)

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #85

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“Chapter Nine, Women in the Church, St. Catherine of Siena, Fr. Teilhard de Chardin, & Criminal Reformation


“The Church stands in the world as a sign of contradiction and as the world since time immemorial excluded women from full personhood; the Church must now ensure that within her embrace, woman’s full personhood is deeply rooted and complete; which can only be accomplished by priestly ordination and full equality with men in the leadership of the Church on earth as that equality is certainly so in Heaven.

“I have come to believe, fully and completely, that the institutional Church has been wrong in not ordaining women to be priests; just as the Church was wrong for centuries in seeing the earth as the center of the solar system, slavery as acceptable and usury not; and this wrongness, in the treatment of women, will become obvious to criminals being evangelized, for they know, better than most, the pain and sorrow of being marginalized, even though their marginalization is self-imposed while that of the women in the Church comes from Vatican politics and the twisting of history.

“Underneath and alongside the institutional church, the deeper reality of the supernatural church has always existed, the Church founded and shaped by Christ, the Church the people in their hearts have always seen—for the institutional church has too much that has been claimed as doctrine, then changed—but the supernatural church, the mystical church, has always known the true and equal power of the women of the Church; a power manifested most powerfully through the lives contemporaneous with Christ, of Holy Mother Mary and Mary Magdalene.

“My Catholic belief is centered on the Great Story; that throughout human history the idea of God has been prevalent within the human heart and mind; and of the four major religions: Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, only three, Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism can claim an individual as founder, and of them only one, Christianity, can claim a founder who was God; the other two merely claiming to be a prophet and an enlightened human respectively.

“Christ’s Godhood is certified by eye witness accounts of miracles he performed unexplainable by any human ability; in particular, his resurrection.

“Christ formed his church on the rock of Peter, and the gates of hell have not prevailed against it, and as the Roman Catholic Church survives still, I know that, as a Catholic, I am of the People of God, and I am as certain that God is in the soul of each human being on earth.

“Question Authority”; that was the foundational mantra of the 1960s; choosing to question the authority that was instructing us to do something we felt was wrong and incorrect teaching is, unfortunately, an aspect of Catholic institutional life; but it is corrected by the Catholic teaching mandating listening to our conscience.

“This comes from the point made in Romans:

“[Romans 2: 14]: As for the Gentiles, though they have no law to guide them, there are times when they carry out the precepts of the law unbidden, finding in their own natures a rule to guide them, in default of any other rule; [15] and this shews that the obligations of the law are written in their hearts; their conscience utters its own testimony, and when they dispute with one another they find themselves condemning this, approving that. [16] And there will be a day when God (according to the gospel I preach) will pass judgement, through Jesus Christ, on the hidden thoughts of men.”

“All human beings have the eternal written on their hearts and even within those who do not believe in God, even some who call themselves Humanists, as is evident when the father of Humanism, Abraham Maslow teaches, us that the first step to the supreme heights a human being can reach, is that of self-actualization, a concept surely emanating from the divine nature of human conscience.

“Our conscience, the ability to determine right from wrong, of listening, in that quietness, the still small voice, which, when heeded, serves us well.

“Catholic teaching is absolutely correct, one’s conscience, one’s connection with God, is surely what one must align with, which calls for the attitude, “trust but verify” and verify through our own study, our own conscience, our own listening to that still small voice from God, our own entering into the silence.

“I was born in 1942, to a German/Russian father and Jewish/English mother. My father soon was sentenced to prison for crimes committed as a member of an organized crime family and after a time, my mother remarried.

“My stepfather was a Danish Mormon and I was raised—from 5 years old to 13—as a Mormon.

“At 13 I committed my first theft and it was glorious. I became a criminal—thief and robber—and for the next 20 years plied my trade, not always successfully as I spent 12 of those years in jails, youth homes, reformatories  (all of which I escaped from) and maximum security state and federal prisons, (from which I could not escape).

“Later, after release in the waning days of the 1960s, I became a New Ager, and wandered drug-soaked, sensually gorged and joyful, among the glittering trappings of Gnosticism.

“Many years later, when I married and we had a child, we decided to explore religions to find a faith home for our family life and slowly rewound our way through Protestantism, Judaism, and Mormonism, until finally settling on Catholicism; being baptized in 2004.

“At each step in my journey to the Catholic Church, I studied deeply the theology and praxis of the chosen faith and in each case, the theology came up short; except for Catholicism, whose richness kept rewarding—rewards me still—me the deeper I studied.

“Even when I began a deep study of the dissenting theologians of the Church—as I have always believed in the role of the devil’s advocate—I found much to confirm my Catholic faith; but less to confirm the institutional church.

“Here is where I found myself, some years ago, when I began to realize that the true church was the Mystical Church; but the greatest gate to the Mystical Church was the Apostolic Gate, the gate of the apostles and the fathers and mothers of the Catholic Church.

“The Mystical Church, Supernatural Church, is the Church God created when he created us; it is the way of life we know, in our God infused souls, that we should live by.

“Human souls have directly communicated with God since the beginning and though they have often misunderstood God, or chosen to ignore or go against God, they have known what God wants them to do, how God wants then to live their lives on earth.

“This is the Mystical Church

“The Mystical Church is the church Christ—God become man—enhanced upon the earth two thousand years ago in Israel.

“He was born on earth as a member of the Chosen People of God, from a Jewish woman, impregnated by God.

“He was the Messiah foretold in Jewish history and the Mystical Church created by him embraced and enhanced Judaism, opening the Apostolic Gate to the Catholic Church.

“Today, the Mystical Church is the Church found scattered—as is the way of humans since Babel—throughout the thousands of humanly corrupted gates of divine light

“It is not the humanly corrupted churches of Catholicism, Buddhism, Islam, Protestantism, Hinduism, or Judaism; but through the Apostolic Gate is the truest path to the Mystical Church, and through the Apostolic Gate the greatest light shines on God’s words to humans.

“The universe is the creation of God and it is within the human mind’s power—through our linkage to God—to envision the universe and traverse it and the divine image to be found.

“We are warmed by the abyss of the night sky because human eyes gaze back at us and it is our destiny, as we traverse space and time, to someday meet our created brothers and sisters and we will find creedal and familial congruence with others who will also pray the Apostle’s Creed as found in the Catechism of Vatican II:

“I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.

He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary.

He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell.

On the third day He rose again.

He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting.

Amen.” (pp. 49-50)

“We stand now at the Apostolic Gate and the Holy Catholic Church is the Mystical Church beyond. It is the Church that is Holy, uncorrupted by human sin, and it is here for us, has always been here for us, it cannot fall, nor can the evil of Satan tarnish it as he can tarnish the human institutional church.

“It is here in the Apostle’s Creed, in the writings of the Holy Fathers and the Holy Mothers of the Church; the Angelic Doctor, the Universal Catechisms of Trent and Vatican II, and yes, the documents of Vatican II, perhaps the most sublime set of documents ever to come from the modern Church.

“Truth is rationale, beautiful and harmonious. Faith is built on reason, logic and order. The rational mind of human beings can comprehend the ways of God, even if it is only the current Doctors of the Church like Saint Catherine of Siena and St. Thomas Aquinas, or a future Doctor of the Church—I am sure of it—Fr. Teilhard de Chardin, who can so comprehend at the deepest level and then, teach us.

“Catherine reasoned with worldly powers through her mystical faith; Aquinas taught us that reason and faith are congruent; and Fr. Teilhard de Chardin taught us that the practice emanating from their congruence is evolutionary, though not always as it witnessed by women’s ordination, which as I write, Pope Francis has said he will think about establishing a commission to examine women as deacons, as was so in the early church.

“With this richness of past doctrinal study at their command, I am saddened by the lack of reasonable discourse being used by the Church to combat women’s ordination, and the seminal argument of the Church is found in the Catechism of Vatican II:

“1577 “Only a baptized man (vir) validly receives sacred ordination.” The Lord Jesus chose men (viri) to form the college of the twelve apostles, and the apostles did the same when they chose collaborators to succeed them in their ministry. The college of bishops, with whom the priests are united in the priesthood, makes the college of the twelve an ever-present and ever-active reality until Christ’s return. The Church recognizes herself to be bound by this choice made by the Lord himself. For this reason the ordination of women is not possible.”

“Of course, Jesus Christ also only chose Jews to be apostles, but that is not now, nor has it ever been, considered as another scripturally-based requirement ; and even more cogent in Scripture:

“[Galatians 3:27]: All you who have been baptized in Christ’s name have put on the person of Christ;  [28] no more Jew or Gentile, no more slave and freeman, no more male and female; you are all one person in Jesus Christ. [29] And if you belong to Christ, then you are indeed Abraham’s children; the promised inheritance is yours.”

“What to do, what to do?

“Our questions lead us to the Kingdom of Conscience, the house of self-knowledge infused with knowledge of God, but always study, study, life-long learning, and prayer, daily prayer, hourly prayer, continuous prayer, seek the truth of doctrine.

“Yes, prostitutes and criminals are the farthest from God, yet, as we see with the prostitute Saint Mary of Magdalene and the thief Saint Dismas, they were among those closest to him.

“Yes, the search for truth is endless and we know that what once seemed reasonable and true can become false, perhaps not any better exhibited than through the case of the great scientist Galileo, imprisoned for life by the Catholic Church for expressing a truth which the Church, at that time, reasonably denied.

“It was reasonable, during the time of Galileo, to believe that the earth was the center of the universe because that is what our senses told us was true, and certain scriptures seemed to support that.

“This was Church doctrine at the time—as was the perfidy of the Jews, the rightness of slavery, the chattelism of women, and the evil of usury—and as fervently subscribed to then, as the denial of the priesthood to women is now.” (pp. 413-422)

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #84

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“Concluding Thoughts

“The great movement after World War II which began to address the huge impact Communism had made within the academy, government, and media, so exemplified by the investigations of Senator Joseph McCarthy; was initially and very successfully represented as a national aberration that had no basis in truth, but which, after the slow release of files from the fall of Soviet Communism, was seen to be, not an aberration, but a valiant effort by heroic people, like Senator McCarthy, to save their country from Communism.

“In essence then, the later domination of the Russian Orthodox Church by the Communist Party’s security force, the KGB, was congruent with some central streams of the history of Russian philosophy and socio-political thought.

“The power of Communism to attract and hold the allegiance of the Russian people for as long as it did is also connected to its masquerading as religion.

“In relation to all that we have examined in this chapter, the traditional position of the Church regarding Communism, Fatima and the call for the consecration of Russia and the failure to answer that call, what does all of it mean in relation to criminal reformation?

“The answer may be a response to the signs of the times, when through the emancipation of class, slaves, women and youth, so painfully and vividly represented by the French Revolution, the American Civil War, the women’s suffragette movement, and the 1960’s movement of youth, the denouncement of things carried little weight coming from authority—Question Authority being a clarion call of all emancipation movements—and softer appeals to reason and self-interest were seen as the path to conversion.

“Criminals will respond to truth weightier than the criminal/carceral truth they live by when it is lived by its proponents. Talk is cheap, but when men and women walk their talk, it is priceless.

“Though it is difficult to find within the modern Catholic Church in America those men and women, they do exist, and the golden rod of faith they represent and carry forth, whether it is through their membership and leadership of Church organizations and orders, they are men and women who live by the ancient faith, the faith of our fathers as represented within the Universal Catechisms of Trent and Vatican II, and the papal magisterium, and through them and through all of the faithful, the Holy Catholic Church Christ promised would not fall under the gates of hell, still and will always, stand.

“For it is a Church outliving bad popes, bad bishops, bad priests, bad nuns, and keeping within the heart of faith, those innocent faithful who the great apparitions of Our Lady reveal as truly the heart of the Church, as her son proclaimed through Mary Magdalene and Dismas, those who the world does not see, are so often those Christ sees most clearly and holds most closely.

“An ambiguous Vatican II, the machinations of Freemasons, Communists—Catholic or non-Catholic—and other secular enemies are but wind in the willows to the infinite roar of Almighty God, creator and king of the world the prince of the world may not influence; and it is the heel of the Virgin Woman who crushes the serpent head of all worldly troubles whose only effect on the Holy Catholic Church who cannot fall though the Gates of Hell be opened upon her, as they have been since the beginning.

“I read laments outlining the end of civilization because the Church has lost her way, misguided by confused popes, corrupt priests, bishops, and nuns, yet I do not tremble for the Church and I pray the writers of laments seek greater understanding.

“The Church is not a single pope, bishop, priest or nun. The Church is Christ, Mary and the Communion of Saints; and those pilgrims fulfilling their earthly mission will stumble but Christianity will not.

“Indeed, the true Church is the Church beneath the church, not the institutional church but the supernatural church, not the result of the actions of men, but resulting from the actions of God and his apostles on earth.

“The Vatican II Ecumenical Council of the Church from October 11, 1962 to December 8, 1965 was a significant event in the life of the Church, where all the bishops of the world gathered and under the leadership of the Pope—Pope John XXIII who opened it and Pope Paul VI who closed it—created magisterial documents that still cause controversy through misinterpretation and misrepresentation.

“What happened during Vatican II was a struggle between liberal Catholics and conservative Catholics—though inaccurate terms as all Catholics, by their oath of baptism, have to conserve the deposit of faith—but still descriptive and useful. It was a struggle between those who wanted to liberalize her practice and language—often with very good reason—and those who wanted to conserve her practice and language, also, with very good reason.

“The liberals largely won, so well documented in two magisterial works: The Rhine Flows into the Tiber: A History of Vatican II, by Fr. Ralph M. Wiltgen, S.V.D. (1985) Tan Books, and Iota Unum: A Study of Changes in the Catholic Church in the XXth Century, by Romano Amerio (1996) Sarto House.

“Reading the Vatican II documents again, confirms to me that while we may find what we wish in the often dense prose, we can lose ourselves in the interpretations by others, though seeking out the relatively balanced work commenting on Vatican II, such as the aforementioned works by Wiltgen and Amerio, will pay dividends.

“The decades-long discussion, or perhaps more accurately described, war, between the liberal wing of the Catholic Church and the conservatives over the interpretation, and in some cases, validity, of its doctrinal and pastoral documents (a war that since the beginning of the Church) is an issue that anyone involved in ministry to criminals—inside prison or out—has to come to terms with.

“I first became aware of this during the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) process I was going through in preparation for baptism, but it was not an issue I deeply engaged with until about eight years later.

“From the liberal perspective, Vatican II and the Pope who opened it, Pope John XXIII—who many liberals refer to as “Good Pope John”, also opened the Church to the modern world with love, compassion, and good humor from the oft perceived closed, rigid, and overly medieval and intellectual Catholic world represented by the Pius Popes, most notably Pope Saint Pius X and Pope Pius XII, though it was also a Church of clarity and one whose writings I return to often, with those of Pope Pius XII remaining a favorite.

“From a conservative perspective—one I largely share—the Pius popes were the last great and strongly traditional leaders of the Catholic world in relation to Communism.

“For instance, the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, Gaudium et Spes, does not have a section on Communism, but it examined economic theory.

“With all of the good things that occurred at Vatican II and also with many of the other unfortunate events that occurred during the Council, the conclusion I have reached—in harmony with the Church—is that Vatican II was a legitimate Ecumenical Council, as traditionally defined by the Church.

“It is true many of the documents greatly favored the positions taken by liberals and some even protected Communism, but that was because liberals were much better organized during the Council to ensure their perspective took precedence; but, in many cases—Mass in the vernacular being one, though I love and prefer the Latin Mass—were appropriate decisions.

“In the Western world, including Latin America, where Catholicism was well established, opening up the Mass to the vernacular was seen by many as a loss. In the mission fields, such as Africa, it was seen as a blessing.

“The Dogmatic Constitution, Lumen Gentium, Section 8, saying: “…although many elements of sanctification and of truth are found outside of its visible structure. These elements, as gifts belonging to the Church of Christ, are forces impelling toward catholic unity”, implied to many that the Church was not the sole path to salvation as stated by Catholic tradition.

“But, while the first sentence seems to say that, the second reaffirms that the full truth is only generated from within the Catholic Church, though it may find its way to other places, as through—for instance—the Protestants via their founder, the Catholic priest, Martin Luther.

“This quality of the writings coming from Vatican II, stating one thing but perhaps implying another, is, I have come to realize, one of the methods the Church has decided upon for confronting modernity—maintaining the clarity of tradition while allowing the ambiguity of the times.

“This method softens the clarity of the Church’s one truth and allows those who would run from that sort of ‘golden rod clarity’ to stick around.

“It is not a method I particularly like, but I certainly see the wisdom of it, and it may lay at the heart of the Church’s softening of its relations with Communism, especially through the long papacy of John Paul II, the first pope from a Communist Country, who had several decades of dealing with the Communists while priest, bishop, and cardinal in Poland; and may have decided that, once pope, that there could be a more effective way of converting Communists than the historical method developed by previous popes.

“And the results may very well be seen in the recent speculation that the Orthodox Church is very close to rejoining the Roman Catholic fold.

“This being said, it is still troubling that the Church promised to not speak of Communism during Vatican II, especially considering the perspective on that silence mentioned by Romano Amerio in his book Iota Unum.

“This is troubling and little seems resolved about the trouble by characterizing thinking and speaking about totalitarianism without reference to the very model of totalitarianism since 1917, Communism.

“We see in the writings of many superb thinkers, even some who wrote against the Church, such as Ayn Rand, the essentials of truth, once we have gotten hold of the whole truth from which to view them; but sadly, many of these thinkers ended their lives in bitterness, sadness, acrimony, and ultimately failure as deep as the chasm between their discovered truth and the full truth they never accepted.

“One aspect of Fatima that I’ve not seen mentioned much is its timeliness. Our Holy Mother promised in 1917 she would call for the consecration of Russia, warning of great suffering if that consecration was not carried out.

“The Church says it was carried out within the consecration of the entire world by Pope John Paul II, and Sister Lucia, one of the Fatima children, agreed.

“However, it would seem to me, and I certainly have no special knowledge other than my study of the issue for the past couple of years, that when she promised on July 13, 1917 to call for the consecration of Russia and following it up with the specific call within a vision to Sister Lucia on June 13, 1929, she meant it to take place then and when we consider the sufferings of the world since—Communist takeover of Russia and the approximately 100 million estimated that were killed by its edicts, world-wide depression, WWII and the genocide against the Jewish people taking the lives of six million, Communist takeover of China, Korea, and Southeast Asia and the millions of lives lost in the process, and the hundreds of millions lost to abortion, the sexual abuse crisis in the Church—it is hard to see how anyone century could have been much worse.

“The still active effort to have the pope consecrate Russia, while certainly not really harmful as Russia is a criminal state and can certainly benefit from consecration, the time it should have been done was the time our Holy Mother called for it to be done, and since it was not done then, much of the damage surely has already been done.

“Our walking the talk of Catholicism, our prayers for the world, for our faith, for the Holy Father, priests and nuns, all religious and all the faithful are still the one certain way we can help Our Lord help our world.

“The ambiguity of the Catechism produced by Vatican II cuts both ways; solidifying tradition or disrupting it, depending on who is reading it.

“The faithful will hew to the traditional doctrine woven through it, the dissident will see innovation and disruption to traditional doctrine and will hew to that, and so it has always been, even since the Garden.

“Vatican II was a true council, congruent with the tradition of many ecumenical councils of the Church in the world, but it also continued the eternal war the Church in the world has been engaged, with more ammunition perhaps given to Satan than to Christ; but regardless of the quantity of ammunition, the ultimate end has already been decided by God and, as written since the Garden, Satan loses.

“Ammunition is only as sound as the gun from which it is fired.

“Though the ambiguity of Vatican II and the Catechism later promulgated by Pope John Paul II, gave many bullets to Satan in his penetration of the Church, it also identified his minions through their use of those bullets; as did the interpretations of Vatican II and the Catechism as supporting Catholic dogma identify those who stood with Peter, Christ and Mary.

“Scientific theology is clearly that from St. Thomas Aquinas and pastoral theology would describe that which has been coming from the Vatican since Pope John XXIII, but both are a reflection of the traditional theology of the Catholic Church, but expressed in different ways, for different times; a strategy straight from St. Paul.

“For John Paul II, knowing from personal experience that Communism does not work and ultimately degrades into corruption and criminality; he knew that salvation would then be possible, conversion would then be possible, for he knew that the 2,000 years of Catholic history enduring truth and practice would attract the ideological riven Communist who had seen his bright vision become a dark nightmare.

“Our Church is a pilgrim Church.

“Our Church is divinely founded and divinely protected though worldly stained, even to the point of housing satanic evil.

“Our Church—and here we must clearly include Jerusalem of the Old Covenant and stretching back to Genesis—has, yes, sometimes whored herself and the ancient condemnations as the Whore of Babylon passed on to the children of heretics as it was to me by my Mormon parents, is therefore accurate, as is the acclamation by the faithful as Holy Mother Church.

“Both Marys—the mother of Jesus and the Magdalene—were present at the close of the Old Covenant and the opening of the New, and both Marys are with us still, especially the Magdalene whose penitential life is a mark of criminal transformation unequaled.

“Now then, with the Miracle of Fatima in our mind, when the narrative within the minds of most Americans, is that Communism is dead, what is the point mulling it over once again.

“The point is, dear reader, that the very same forgetfulness of incarnate evil represented by Communism is a forgetfulness clouding the mind for time immemorial when it comes to the works of those principalities and powers allied with Satan against God and the Church; which is exactly why Our Lady came to Fatima.

“It is happening again, now, today, always, regarding the historical implacable enemy of the Church, rampant evil and the tendency of people to ignore it, deny it, hope it leaves them, us, alone.

“Communism, perhaps in new forms—while retaining its historical nature in Russia—is certainly not dead.

“The more the financial systems of the world struggle to provide fairness and opportunity to their citizens, the more Communism wends its way in through the weakened defenses.

“Do we not all fall prey to this and do we not all know the surest defense is a strong relationship with God through prayer and living a life of as much sanctity as we can, remembering that betrayal is written into our very bones and blood, beginning with Adam and Eve.

“After studying the issue, the conclusion I reached regarding the failure of the Council to vigorously condemn Communism as had so many previous popes, was that, at best, Vatican II was a council whose decisions on this issue were confused.

“My research into the subject has continued (as does my research on all the subjects of which I have written) as I have worked on this book covering the same ground, and now I am reaching the conclusion that what I saw in the beginning as confusion may very well have been wisdom.

“One of the great benefits of the ambiguity expressed in the interpretations of the Council’s work, was how it has drawn out the venom that had lain festering in the Church as those religious and laity who had simmered in dissent now flamed into a raging fire of opposition and all now know who they are and of whom they speak, as they cast off their religious garb and way of life.

“Remembering the world-wide atmosphere of the 1960s in which Vatican II evolved, where we largely moved from the historical age of the tyrants, kings, and dictators to the age of committees and dialogue; is it any wonder that the Vatican, accustomed more than any other institution in the world, to think in terms of centuries rather than years, would play a leading role in this shift, an idea with deepened resonance watching the evolving papacy of our new Holy Father Francis as a congruent link in the Holy Fathers since Vatican II.

“When I last got out of prison in August of 1969, and returned to California, I immediately was swept up in the revolutionary movement wherein criminals, paradoxically, were seen as leaders.

“Though my deepest involvement was with the counterculture themes, the mantra that most of us shared during that period was “Question Authority”; and coming out of the 1950s, where the most authoritative institutions of the culture wrapped obedience to authority in steel webs, it was an incredibly liberating—but as we eventually learned, corrosive—mantra, as those of us who lived through that time remember.

“At that time, my bibles were The Wisdom of the Sands by Antoine de Saint Exupery, which I embraced during my last stretch in prison at McNeil Island Federal Penitentiary, and The Whole Earth Catalog, which someone thrust into my hands shortly after I had gotten out and said “Here, catch up.” My drug of choice was mescaline, and in that befuddled state, I believed we—the smiley long-haired bearded ones and our earth mother women—were creating a new world, which seemed to be validated in the other beaming faces (who were also peaked out on psychedelics) I encountered as I walked the streets of Lake Tahoe, Berkeley, San Francisco, Vancouver, British Columbia, and all points in between, with my small entourage.

“We believed psychedelics opened the doors of perception—as Aldous Huxley so aptly phrased— allowing us to discover our latent powers, and when The Aquarian Conspiracy by Marilyn Ferguson was published, we knew that what we had thought we were doing was in fact what we had been about.

“Later, much later, I would discover that the real, powerful conspiracy was founded by Christ and led by Peter which had existed for millennia, radically changing the meaning of life on earth.

“This was the Catholic Church, the foundation of Western thought; and the saints of the Church had been accessing latent human powers through the grace of God ever since.

“Within this environment of change, the decision by Vatican II to focus on change or as the elements were called then: aggiornamento, development, and ressourcement, or, modernizing, evolving, and returning to sources, respectively, was a wise response to the spirit of the Aquarian times.

“One of the ideas, once obscured but now leaping out, is that rather than continuing the strong pronouncements against Communism characterizing the first five decades of the 20th Century, the Church now decided to embrace in order to convert Communism.

“And one wonders how much this approach opened the door for Pope John Paul II to play one of the leading roles in vanquishing the Soviet empire a few decades later, and to the emerging potential coming together of the Russian Orthodox with Rome.

“On the other hand, this may well be the making a bad situation a little better by acknowledging the reality on the ground; the bad situation being the failure of Peter and the bishops to consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of the Holy Mother of God, and the acknowledgement that the Church was not able to defeat Communism during its formative stage through the intersession of the Holy Mother; the best policy now might be to dialogue with them, seeking men and women of good will with whom conversion might be possible; and that might very well be a wise strategy.

“The decision to engage rather than condemn Communism might prove to be a wise decision or it might prove to be, as the current pope and the two previously have done by calling for the abolition of capital punishment, indicate a lack of understanding of evil.

“While this may seem fanciful for men—the Vicars of Christ on earth—whose life is focused on helping sinners, but an examination of the life of most priests can reveal little opportunity to fully appreciate the hardness and clarity of evil intent, of an evil life lived consciously.

“Though the three Holy Fathers—one who dealt with the Communists, one with Nazis and one with a military dictatorship—have seen evil, one would think their knowledge would be deep but here is where the within and the without of the human soul crucially determines soul knowledge and why many traditions advocate salvation coming through self-degradation; but not sought as by Rimbaud, Rasputin and Huysmans, but having happened in life, like Pope Saint Callistus, the former criminal who became pope, perhaps one of the greatest popes.

“Again, though I am still researching and praying about all of this, it does add to the wonder that this convert feels as I come to learn more and more about my adopted faith, and am validated in my knowledge—especially for those of us approaching the Church intellectually, which is the way most penitential professional criminals will actually convert—that lifelong study is crucial to truly understand and appreciate the Church and her social teaching.

“Our faith requires us to live in the present, not in an imagined past or dreamt future.

“Our Catholic faith requires us to honor her tenets, and to live, supernaturally, in the present, and always remember, our Church is a Church of the Word, not a Church of the human, the Eternal Church underneath and above the brick church.” (pp. 400-413)


The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #83

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“Communism & Fatima 

“Fatima was the most important event of the 20th Century and beyond.

“However, if the apparition really happened and I believe it did, then the shepherds of the Church failed Our Lady and our Church then and continue that failure today.

“They not only failed to protect our Church from the Communist wolves, but in all too many cases, became Communist wolves themselves.

“The speculation surrounding why the appearance of the Holy Mother and her plea to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart, has not been followed; continues to this day.

“The request for the Collegial Consecration was first promised before the Bolsheviks overcame Russia and her Catholic monarchy, eventually killing the entire family of Czar Romanov, and specifically called for later, and it is still unfulfilled.

“Part of the reason—the influential power of human relationships—has been uncovered by several historians.

“Russian Communism’s penetration and attempt to control Catholic strategy continued through the papacy of John Paul II.

“The Russian Communist presence within the Vatican appears to have been the mortar that kept the Vatican from ever—to this day—fulfilling the wishes of the Holy Mother at Fatima.

“No matter how many times I read about this, I am still shocked that it happened and has been so completely documented from so many sources, yet so completely absent within the perspective of the Catholic public.

“One book that covers this is The End and the Beginning: Pope John Paul II—The Victory of Freedom, the Last Years, the Legacy by George Weigel, published in 2010.

“Communism, being able to accomplish this powerful strategy against critiques from the one force on earth with the spiritual authority to be heard and to combat it, thus proved itself a very powerful and effective adversary.

“Communism is a religion, its bible is The Communist Manifesto, its theologians are Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Debray, Fanon; its priests are legion, and its shock troops are too often criminals, harking to the first name of the organization Communism’s founders, Marx and Engels, joined, the League of the Outlaws.

“The Holy Mother at Fatima also knew about the real criminal danger of an unconsecrated Russia, due to the crimes—though of a much less magnitude of national violence and brutality than the horror of the Nazi holocaust and the Stalinist terror—which have resulted via a world-wide explosion of organized crime emanating from Russia.

“The Marxist infiltration of Catholicism began in Europe after years of occupation by the Nazis and the Communists, solidifying their atheistic ideology over oppressed European peoples, where the ambitious and unscrupulous assumed positions of cultural superiority because of their lack of religious commitment.

“Some in the traditional wing of Catholicism—of which I am somewhat partial to, and I will explain the ‘somewhat’—believes the solution to Modernism, of which Communism can be considered an aspect, is a reassertion of Christendom; the time when European governments, all of which were monarchial, accepted the kingship of God and his vicar, Peter.

“The problem here, the ‘somewhat’, is that a central element of God’s plan—until he comes again—is the reign over earth (but not human souls) by Satan, the prince of this world; whose blandishments the Christian way of life is protection against.

“Understanding all of this, coming to terms with history and the various blandishments offered by all sides in the Catholic versus Communism debate requires a process of spiritual maturation too few of us reach for.

“Maturing in God, is a process each of us has to go through if we are to become mature Catholics, leaving the primitive and childish things like Liberation Theology and Communism behind, and part of this maturation is growing in wisdom and knowledge through the studying of human life on earth through the lens of Catholic doctrine.

“Is this not the wonderful way of divine parentage, which we as humans so often strive to attain in our childraising?

“Rebellion and questioning authority are congruent with youth, then as now, and for those of us whose youth was influenced by the siren calls of the rebellion prevalent in our youth, the critical examination of the avatars of our youth is always both difficult and exciting; difficult as it shreds a passion of youth, exciting because it presages the wisdom of age.

“And so it is for me, writing about Communism, whose Marxist roots briefly influenced my work in prison and for a time after being released.” (pp. 397-400)

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #82

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“Communism in America

“Many Catholics—especially those from the prime era of Soviet influence, the 1930s-1970s—who were caught up in the Nietzschean drama of Communism and later in its newest incarnation, Liberation Theology, liked to say that the horrors of Leninism/Stalinism were vestiges of the past and necessary to reform a tsarist dominated peoples into a modern industrialized society, an argument only to be believed by those who want to believe.

“Catholic teaching knows that the truths of the Church trump those of Communism.

“Communist influence on most criminals—though some prison/criminal gangs have Communism woven throughout their gang narrative—is surreptitious because by temperament, criminals are conservative, so its influence is hidden under the guise of Liberation Theology, Socialism, or Social Justice, the softer generic terms used by liberal Catholics and non-Catholics.

“A counter-intuitive perspective is that much of the intellectual impact of Communism was—and remains—in the West, rather than in Russia (perhaps explaining its recent descent into state criminality).

“What is fairly common among many Communist-inspired groups is the now well-established pattern of propaganda promoting peace and natural political evolution while working for civil war and political revolution; and the great hidden agenda, destruction of the Catholic Church.

“In the West it has been a long-term strategy to reduce the attention paid to Communism by refocusing the attention on the evils of capitalism and, in large part, it has been a successful strategy.

“Newly released Communist files are a powerful reminder of the very deep restructuring of the individual psychology of the secret police which Communist governments in Eastern Europe used to control the captured country’s population.

“This deep training and enforcement throughout the Communist dominated countries of Eastern Europe and within Russia itself, is not something that would dissipate over a few years out from under the Soviet yoke, but, as we have learned since, has been usefully brought into service of the criminal state Russia has become.

“In the context of the apparition of the Holy Virgin Mother at Fatima (six consecutive monthly apparitions beginning in May, 1917) calling for the consecration of Russia to save the world from the horrors of Communism, what has happened since has given truth to Fatima.

“Communist training has proven to be very prophetic as the ideal of the revolutionary captured many intellectuals in the decades during and shortly after Fatima, as it sadly—though under different names—still does today.

“Communism, in this context, is the further extension of Nietzsche’s Overman, from insane fantasy to insane action.

“And is it not so always with the young—it certainly was with me—that the allures of idealism, great adventure, and the creation of a heaven on earth, a heaven one can see, touch, really feel, far outweigh the wispy promises about heaven after life; and more, this eternal yearning of the young provides the underpinning of the importance of Catholic evangelism, especially among the young, so well exemplified by World Youth Day.

“One of the books which made a huge impression upon Communist idealists was Ten Days That Shook the World, by John Reed; and its romantic, while still technical, approach fired the spirits of many who would become American Communists.

“This book and the author’s deep influence over the intelligentsia of the early Twentieth Century—captured brilliantly in the insightful docudrama Reds in which Warren Beatty plays John Reed, which, by the way, is a very powerful, romantic, and idealistic film—played a substantial role in the Russian Communist penetration into American life.

“The importance reached into heaven and the Holy Virgin Mother Mary appeared at Fatima to warn of the results of this event, should the Church—acting through the Holy Father and all of the world’s bishops—not consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart, which the Church did not and has not, as of this date, done.

“There have been many consecrations proclaiming to be in response to Fatima, but virtually none of them mention Russia by name, which were her precise instructions, virtually all are presented as consecrations of the world.

“Communism in America—as represented by American Communists and a complicit liberal/progressive political community, helped largely through the representation of former U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy as an out-of-control, foaming-at-the-mouth political extremist pursuing imaginary enemies—has accomplished the same result as Satan, convincing everyone that he doesn’t exist.

“What decades of research and new books on Senator McCarthy’s accusations that the American government was penetrated by Communists have proven is that he was absolutely right.

“He was certainly a flawed messenger, but his central message was correct.

“The central fact in the ability of Catholicism to defeat Communism in the conversion of criminals is that the former has walked the talk and the latter has not.

“Communism’s narrative core is that humanity is composed of economic beings struggling against one another to gain power over others.

“Catholicism’s narrative core is that humanity is composed of spiritual beings struggling against sin to gain heaven.

“At the center of the Communist system is terror and government coercion.

“At the center of Catholicism is love and individual choice.

“It is easy to see the attraction Communism represents for some criminals to whom money in the hand is far more valuable than a check in the mail, a stolen wallet more joy than a paycheck.

“But, ironically, it is easier to prove the truth of Catholicism through its worldly history’s congruence with its social teaching, than that of Communism through its worldly history’s incongruence with its social teaching.

“The Church and its doctrine of each life being precious to God, has always been attacked by the world from the day its founder was crucified, and far too often, it has become corrupted in its worldly institutional form, but the corruption by Communism, which the 19th and early 20th century popes had warned about so clearly, seems to have begun in earnest by the failure of the Holy Father to fulfill the command of the Holy Virgin at Fatima in 1917, to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart.

“Much of the horrors she foretold which would happen if Russia was not consecrated, have happened.

“It is within the diplomacy-influenced reasons partially responsible for that failure—the Russian Orthodox Metropolitan who lobbied to ensure the consecration would not happen, was a KGB directed operative—that we see the Vatican corruption that infected the clear support of Catholic teaching about Communism, rendering it virtually mute.

“Also occurring during the 1960’s was the notorious meeting—related to Russian Orthodox lobbying in refusing to condemn evil—at the Kennedy compound where American Catholic religious leaders developed the strategy for Democratic Catholic politicians to support abortion against the clear teaching of the Church.

“Communism’s work with Catholics appears to have focused to some extent on two major orders of the Church, the Society of Jesus and the Maryknoll Society, as well as the lay Catholic Worker Movement founded by Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin.

“Communist influence on the two orders has been written about by others, but as Dorothy Day is being proposed for sainthood, her movement will be noted here.

“The Catholic Worker Movement remained aligned with Communism in its most central strategy, public control of property.

“Dorothy Day, having been a Communist, could have become, after her baptism, a powerful advocate warning of the dangers of Communism, as Whittaker Chambers became; the traditional route taken by former Communists who became Catholic, as part of becoming Catholic is realizing the revealed truth is true, rendering all other proclaimed truths false, suspect, wrong; as I have discovered.

“Not to act on this and reveal the wrongness of Communism and the rightness of Catholicism, is, almost in itself, proof that Dorothy Day did not find Communism wrong; and in fact, her work throughout her life, remained supportive of Communist positions, leaders, and countries.

“Dorothy Day was surely the major Communist-inspired voice in progressive American Catholic circles (often working under the social justice banner) and the Catholic Worker Movement she founded virtually parallels the anti-war, anti-prison, anti-capital punishment mantras which Communist governments working in America advocate.

“Working under the social justice mantra is an idea evolving from the Russian Communist and pre-Communist intelligentsia.

“I think that in Dorothy Day’s case, she had conflated Communism with Catholicism so deeply in her own mind and spirit that they were virtually one and the same thing to her—a classic case of being duped—a form of thinking still very prevalent within the Catholic left, especially those still, and they are many, enamored with Liberation Theology.

“Now that her cause for sainthood has been approved by the American bishops to move her from the current designation as Servant of God, to the next step in the canonization process, the history of the Vatican’s connection to Russian Communism through the period when the Fatima call from the Holy Virgin to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart was not responded to, due, in large part, to the Vatican influence of Orthodox Russian Metropolitans now known to have been KGB directed, will perhaps be examined.

“These positions can also be considered to have formed through manipulation by Communist propaganda—especially as in the case of Day’s pre-Catholic Worker history of involvement with Communist newspapers and American Communists, representing an extensive background of Communist cooperation.

“Catholic social justice is a very good thing, Catholic Communism is not, and the difference is important.

“One of the methods used by the early Catholic Worker Movement to spread Communist-inspired ideas were their Round Table Discussions, usually led by Peter Maurin.

“It doesn’t really matter what labels Communist-inspired Catholic social advocates like Dorothy Day use to describe themselves, as the actions they take and the people they chose to be associated with are what determines their character and mission; and by these standards Dorothy Day was a Communist-inspired Catholic working within the Catholic Church promoting people and policies the Catholic Church had declared anathema, just as so many other Communist-inspired Catholics working under the guise of Liberation Theology are doing today.

“The most comprehensive book to read which explores all of this is The Catholic Worker Movement (1933-1980): A Critical Analysis, by Dr. Carol Byrne, published in 2010.

“Pope Leo XIII in his 1878 encyclical warning about Socialism was clear on the primacy of private property, and the Communist’s desire to seize it.

“As stated, one of the vehicles used for Communist penetration of the Church is Liberation Theology and the preferential option for the poor.

“Many Catholics labeling themselves liberal or progressive who define their work as class struggle and the often needed use of violence to change history, have been caught, and are caught still, by the imagined dreams of Communism—completely blocking the effective reformation of criminals by placing the problem outside instead of inside—so clearly warned against in the 1878 encyclical on socialism by Pope Leo XIII, Quod Apostolici Muneris.

“With the Vatican being surrounded by Italian culture and history, it is not surprising that this perspective infiltrated the Church in Rome and eventually, the Church throughout the world.

“Being a Communist in a capitalist country gives one a rather glamorous position—especially in glamour-addicted America—of revolutionary; and they are not generally perceived as being connected to the violent and brutal governments led by Communists who use the state power they control to oppress people under the guise of caring for them.

“The great enemy of the Church—the prince of this world—has found Communism a worthy tool for many years, and Communism’s predilection for violence is congruent with his satanic hate of free human beings.

“The romantic description of the revolutionary—calculating, hard, immune to human compassion—is very congruent with that expressed by many professional criminals as a necessary mental and spiritual state to occupy in order to be a successful criminal.

“Intellectuals of the early 20th Century were enamored by the courage and relentlessness of the revolutionary men and women of the early labor union movement of the late 19th century and early 20th, which brought dignity and justice to the workers, power in their labor, and much good to America; but in the latter decades of the 20th century unions became a corrupt force virtually eating its young, degrading the ability of public leadership—once public unions became their major campaign funding source—to provide for the public good without policies being filtered through the demands of public employee unions.

“Once the public began to realize that the average pay for public employees demanded by public employee unions was greater than that of the average employee in the private sector, the tide began to turn in the early 21st century, and we are now witnessing, slowly but steadily, the returning of the ability of public leadership to actually work for the public’s good rather than the good of the unions.

“The strong efforts of the Communist-inspired Catholics—like Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin—and the many sisters and priests who worked with them, to change the social structures of the United States as they have changed the internal structure of the American Catholic Church, continue, and it is strategy their fans have found to be most effectively practiced at the local level under the social justice rubric.

“All of this stems from the ancient sin, that humans know better than God, and for Catholics, who live in the faith whose teachings come from God, and are clearly presented within the two universal Catechisms of the Church, Trent & Vatican II, there is always this authority to seek out when confusion arises, a confusion which the advocates of change driving the social justice movement are deeply enmeshed in.

“Holiness for some may be through the Church but for Communist-inspired Catholics who have been trying to redirect the Catholic Church into their very own Kingdom of Heaven on earth for decades; it is through Communism.

“Whether it is the Catholic Worker Movement, Liberation Theology, or the environmental movement, virtually all now linked under the social justice banner, which is a misinterpretation of the true social justice work of the Church as outlined in the Catechism:

“1928. Society ensures social justice when it provides the conditions that allow associations or individuals to obtain what is their due, according to their nature and their vocation. Social justice is linked to the common good and the exercise of authority.

“1929. Social justice can be obtained only in respecting the transcendent dignity of man. The person represents the ultimate end of society, which is ordered to him:

“What is at stake is the dignity of the human person, whose defense and promotion have been entrusted to us by the Creator, and to whom the men and women at every moment of history are strictly and responsibly in debt.

“1930. Respect for the human person entails respect for the rights that flow from his dignity as a creature. These rights are prior to society and must be recognized by it. They are the basis of the moral legitimacy of every authority: by flouting them, or refusing to recognize them in its positive legislation, a society undermines its own moral legitimacy. If it does not respect them, authority can rely only on force or violence to obtain obedience from its subjects. It is the Church’s role to remind men of good will of these rights and to distinguish them from unwarranted or false claims.”

“The Communist-inspired movements want to mandate social justice through legislative fiat enforced by governmental power, while Catholic social justice is proposed to men and women of good will as the preferred way, the way Christ taught us to live and to treat each other.

“The social justice mantra, while particularly attractive for its focus on helping the poor, may be incorrectly presented.

“The 1920s and 1930s were the periods when the Russian Revolution spread its wings, certain of world revolution, and in that expansion the use of the great lie was advocated—speak to others in their language, hide your true intentions, speak of peace and love while excusing violence and advocating class hatred.

“Propaganda became an art form and the Russian Communists and German Fascists became its greatest artists in those horrific decades.

“A classic example—and a central plank in Catholic social justice—is the political utility of advocating pacifism.

“The intellectual basis of American Catholic pacifism has never been developed appropriately—primarily because it cannot stand up to a rigorous examination through the lens of Aquinas-inspired Catholic teaching—and remains primarily a political stance embraced by the Catholic left.

“Moral blindness formed the foundation upon which the revolutionary violence of Liberation Theology—shaped by Communist theory and practice—grew within the Church and, which still exerts substantial control over the strategies of many religious orders and members of the laity, as well as Catholic organizations.

“Another plank in the Catholic Left’s vision of social justice is the prison abolition movement, whose roots are based in Communist ideology of state control of production and the mass distribution of wealth to ensure all are well-fed, housed and otherwise taken care of; social goals devoutly to be wished by all Catholics but properly to be manifested through capitalism and the generosity of the charitable impulse.

“Undergirding virtually all of the Liberation Theology work emanating from Catholics influenced by Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker Movement, is the idea of helping others freely, requiring nothing from them save their need, the no-means-test approach to charitable action.

“This approach, while having a Catholic history, is not congruent with America’s founding principles.

“During the colonial period, when America’s methods of charitable help to the unfortunate were being set into the American character, building or rebuilding the character of the unfortunate not considered worthy of freely given help was essential.

“Fortunately, this directing of charitable help to those who would help themselves still resonates among many in the private philanthropic class, though government unwisely still administers aid recklessly and often to the detriment of the people it claims to be helping.

“There is a virtual library of books written on the corrosiveness of the billions of dollars spent by government in pure welfare with little regard for stimulating self-help.

“One of the best is The Dream & the Nightmare: The Sixties’ Legacy to the Underclass by Myron Magnet, written in 2000.” (pp. 386-397)

The Criminal’s Search for God, Excerpt #81

Continuing the daily serializations of my book: The Criminal’s Search for God: Catholic Reformation of Criminals, .

Today’s excerpt.

“Communism in Russia

“Russia and the Communist system of governance which Our Lady warned us about at Fatima while calling for Russia to be consecrated to her Immaculate Heart, evolved within a history of autocracy; unfortunately, the history of all too many people.

“Russian Communism has had particular success reshaping the worldly ground upon which the Church stands.

“The vision of Jesus as a revolutionary embroiled in a Marxist struggle to free the people from the powers of the rich and powerful, including the priests of Israel and the Roman Empire, is a powerful motif and attracts many to its ranks, a message continuing today as promulgated through books, film, and theatre.

“The continuing influence emanating from the atheistic intellectual and artistic community is part of the reason Our Lady of Fatima told us to consecrate Russia, as Russian Communism is the most dangerous manifestation of the ancient heresy, primarily attractive to the intellectually elite, of Gnosticism.

“Communism’s religiosity, its modern spiritual root, birthed from Gnosticism, but woven throughout another influence, is Nietzschean, the atheistic, materialist spirituality of the Overman, the man who knows.

“A historical infection endemic to the Russian Communist state—as of all Communist states—in congruence with its militant atheistic core beliefs, is corruption and criminality, and Russia has morphed into the most potent criminal state in history, dominating the global criminal world.

“This shift has ramifications of enormous consequence, and the role of the Catholic Church, because of the knowledge bequeathed to it by Our Lady at Fatima, is crucial.

“Fatima is a miracle believed by faith, but investigating it with the intellect reveals proofs of its existence impossible to escape; just as an intellectual exploration of Communism reveals an evil emptiness impossible to escape.

“As the primary process of reformation used by Lampstand is through the intellectual portal to the soul, based on a study of the history and social teaching of the Church, graduate academic degrees, and training in criminal reform organizational administration; the intellectual attraction of Communism and its many portals—socialism, Marxism, and Liberation Theology among them—needs to be addressed.

“I note the importance of the intellect in approaching Catholic truth from the perspective of the father of Western intellectuals, Aristotle, and the seminal Catholic intellectual, Saint Thomas Aquinas, the Angelic Doctor.

“An interesting side note is that for a brief period of time in the 1960s/1970s, especially in California, criminals were seen as the vanguard of the revolution.

“What this makes clear is that the common usage of the term Socialism or Marxism rather than Communism can be deceptive—to either soften or intellectualize the reality—so we’ll use them as intended by Marx and Engels, as synonymous, while keeping in mind modern usage.

“Russian Communism was identified by Our Lady of Fatima as a most pernicious threat to the Church, a position ratified by several popes, but later, during Vatican II softened and virtually disappearing as a papal warning.” (pp. 384-386)