Syte Reitz

The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world…….

Browsing Posts tagged Making Sense of Syria


Seriously, That Was Obama’s Response!

Above is Obama’s verbatim response to receiving a copy of Evangelii Gaudium, a 240 page Apostolic Exhortation written by Pope Francis.
And what did Obama give to Pope Francis in exchange for this moral challenge?
Carrot seeds.

Carrot Seeds?

Yes, probably Michelle’s carrot seeds.
Presumably President Obama thought that carrot seeds from the new White House garden established by Michelle would serve as a suitable memento of this historic visit.
Ironically, the carrot seeds came in a box which represented the very religious freedom that President Obama is in the process of trampling.
The box was made from the timbers from the Basilica of the Assumption, the first Cathedral built in the United States, built in tribute to religious freedom.
President Obama is currently fighting 91 religious liberty lawsuits.
One can only speculate on President Obama’s intent in giving Pope Francis a box made from Basilica of the Assumption timbers.
We hope he was not thumbing his nose at Pope Francis, as he did to President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Cardinal Dolan when he summoned the Cardinal to the White House and lied blatantly to him in the early days of ObamaCare.

Details of the Historic Meeting between Francis and Obama

Barbara Boland of CNS News summarized the Pope’s meeting with President Obama perceptively in an article entitled Obama Gives Pope Vegetable Seeds, Francis Gives Obama Writings on Morality:

CNS on Obama & the Pope



Obama Gives Pope Vegetable Seeds, Francis Gives Obama Writings on Morality


The text:

President Obama met with Pope Francis for the first time this morning, and the two leaders exchanged gifts – Obama gave Francis fruit and vegetable seeds, and the Pope gave Obama a copy of Evangelii Gaudium.
At the beginning of their meeting, before the gift exchange, President Obama sat down at Francis’ desk and said, “It is a great honor. I’m a great admirer. Thank you so much for receiving me.”
Obama gave Francis a symbolic gift of seeds from the White House fruit and vegetable garden.
“These I think are carrots,” Obama said as held a seed pouch. “Each one has a different seed in it. The box is made from timber from the first cathedral to open in the United States in Baltimore.”

The seeds came in a custom engraved chest, made with wood from the United States’ first cathedral, Baltimore’s Basilica of the Assumption. That basilica was designed as a tribute to religious freedom and was built by Bishop John Carroll and Benjamin Latrobe, the architect of the U.S. Capitol.

“If you have a chance to come to the White House, we can show you our garden, as well,” Obama added.
“The Pope, responding in Spanish, said “Como no?” (For Sure!)” AP reported.
The Pope’s gift to Obama were two commemorative medals and a red leather-bound copy of Evaneglii Gaudium, which Pope Francis frequently gifts to heads of state. Francis wrote the exhortation last year, and it contains strong condemnations of abortion as well as asking the faithful to care for the poor.

From the AP:“You know, I will probably read this in the Oval Office when I am deeply frustrated and I am sure that it will give me strength and calm me down,” Obama said.
The pope responded in English, “I hope.”

According to the Vatican Information Service, Obama and Pope Francis discussed issues as “religious freedom, life and consciences objection” – hot topics in light of the current Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius Supreme Court case deciding whether government can compel business owners to act in violation of their religious beliefs:

In the context of bilateral relations and cooperation between Church and State, the Parties discussed questions of particular relevance for the Church, such as the exercise of the rights to religious freedom, life and conscientious objection, as well as the issue of immigration reform. Finally, the Parties stated their common commitment to the eradication of human trafficking throughout the world.

 What’s Next for the Pope?

Pope Francis will be hearing confessions in St. Peter’s Basilica tomorrow, as part of his global “24 Hours for the Lord” initiative, which encourages all dioceses to have at least one parish open all day and night tomorrow, March 28th, so that anyone can go to Confession.

Watch out world, we all know what happens each time this Pope initiates a global spiritual  initiative!

Slide1What’s Next for President Obama?

President Obama will be touring the Colloseum, the place where countless Christians were fed to lions.
The ultimate irony, since Cardinal Burke, the Vatican’s Chief Justice, recently declared that Obama’s policies are “Progressively More Hostile Toward Christian Civilization.”




Doug Erickson and theWisconsin State Journal Are Up to Their Old Tricks

Smear Journalism in Madison

b6d7090a321aeca0f529ab265a288b1b_XLDespite Madison, Wisconsin’s claim to be very “progressive” and very tolerant, the Wisconsin State Journal (WiSJ) and reporter Doug Erickson have slanted their reporting on the Catholic Church and the Church’s Bishop in Madison in the past.
One of the prime reasons for my establishing this blog was to defend my faith against such “progressives” in Madison who apparently feel the need to malign the Catholic Church.
Many of my articles, including this one, fall under the blog category “Don’t Diss My Church.”

To be fair, there was a time last year when Doug Erickson and the WiSJ appeared to have reformed their reporting on Catholic Madison.  The article written on Bishop Morlino’s tenth anniversary as Bishop of Madison was balanced and reasonable.
Just two days after the balanced article, the WiSJ was back to their old tricks, publishing a misrepresentation cartoon of Bishop Morlino.
To their credit, Doug Ericson and the WiSJ seemed to behave better during the last few months, focusing on promoting their own liberal agenda, rather than focusing on maligning the Catholic Church directly.
But this week Doug Erickson and the WiSJ are clearly back to their old tricks.


This week an article was published  in the WiSJ with a headline linking Bishop Morlino to a Diocese which is going bankrupt due to sexual child abuse allegations.

  • Never mind that the alleged heinous acts did not occur on Bishop Morlino’s watch.
  • Never mind that some of the alleged heinous acts occurred before Bishop Morlino was born.
  • Never mind that the lawsuits in question were filed up to 71 years after abuse was alleged to have occurred.
  • Never mind that the allegations were only made in 2011, almost a decade after Bishop Morlino was no longer at that diocese.
  • Never mind that Catholic Priests abuse children at a rate far lower than that of other males in the general population and that the priests have been politically and unfairly targeted by critics of the Catholic Church (previously reported by this blogger and acknowledged by Newsweek and by USA Today).

The simple fact that Bishop Morlino worked at that diocese in the past was enough for Madison’s leading newspaper to find an opportunity to link this good Bishop’s name with child abuse scandals which did not happen, nor did they surface, on Bishop Morlino’s watch.

What’s Good for the Goose is Good for the Gander

I say to Doug Erickson and to the Wisconsin State Journal:

Have either the University you attended or an employer you worked for previously ever been the subjects of sexual abuse litigation?
Was a teacher/staff member from your middle school ever accused of child abuse (9.6% of public school students are targets of educator sexual misconduct)?

Have you ever rooted for Penn State, whose football coach Jerry Sandusky is a convicted serial child molester? 

Are you a fan of Woody Allen movies, whose sexual molestation of his family has been in the news in recently? 
Have you ever vacationed in Barbados, the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Korea, Mongolia, Philippines, Thailand, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, or Uruguay, all countries reputed to be involved with Child Sex Tourism?

Slide1If the answer to any of these questions is “yes,” then we better write an article about YOU, similar to the one you wrote about Bishop Morlino, announcing that this place you were associated with in the past has been accused of heinous acts:


Wisconsin State Journal Reporter’s Previous Employer
Filing For Bankruptcy Due to Child Abuse Allegations
Doug Erickson’s Previous Employer
Filing For Bankruptcy Due to Child Abuse Allegations

We can pretend that we did not smear your reputation with our suggestive article by publishing a quote from you on how you were unaware, or not involved, or only there in a different decade.

Bishop Morlino wasn’t even born at the time as some of the allegations you write about were said to occur, and the problems did not occur on his watch, yet you include his name in your sensational title. 

Doug Erickson and the Wisconsin State JournalOnce a suggestion is made, whether directly or indirectly by association, it cannot be taken back. 
A journalist should have the integrity not to engage in such smear tactics.
Shame on you.
How unprofessional!

It’s Not About Catholic Priests

The media’s smearing of the Catholic Church is  not about Catholic priests.  It’s about smearing the Catholic Church, smearing a moral authority which encourages citizens to hold government accountable to the laws of God .

Progressives have an agenda.
They want to live their lives centered on pleasure, and want to destroy anyone who suggests that they hurt others with their selfish agenda.
They want promiscuity celebrated, they want the resulting babies aborted, and they want their new morality to be praised and to be taught in the schools.
Media is their weapon.

Wisconsin State JournalWhether it is conscious or not, this is the agenda the Wisconsin State Journal and Doug Erickson are promoting.
Catholics get the most flack because they are the most numerous and organized of Christian groups,  and thus have the most power.
Catholic Bishops are particularly frightening to progressives, and are under particular attack.

Want to Complain?


Want to Pray for Our Bishops?Slide1

Check out the cool global map  at Rosary for the Bishop, a website organized in 2005 to help support Bishop Morlino against the attacks he was suffering in Madison, and which now coordinates 1580 members from 258 dioceses and from 996 parishes, who have prayed 278,300 rosaries for 456 bishops globally since then.

Join the effort by signing up to pray as little as one rosary per month for the bishop of your choice. Note: Pope Francis is also a bishop, and you can sign up to pray for him.

Against odds like this, Doug Erickson and the Wisconsin State Journal have little chance.


 See what happened the last time we took to global prayer: Making Sense of Syria.

Making sense of Syria

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Syria Explained – the New Politics
Mixing Politics and Prayer

To Separate or Not to Separate, Church and State?

Church_StateWhile Presidents and lawmakers have no power or right to impose a specific religion or set of beliefs on our nation (try as they might, as Obama is presently doing with secularism and with socialism), individual citizens would be remiss if they failed to consult their code of ethics before voting or before supporting a particular political candidate or policy.  And that code of ethics is, in all probability, derived from their religion.

Hence, in a democratic republic composed of 80% Christians, the law will be, and the law ought to be, based on Judeo-Christian principles.  Not by decree, but democratic determination.  Also by choice of the Founders, who unquestionably founded this nation on Christian principles.

Christian Morality Undermined

Recent attempts to undermine this foundation by those who argue separation of Church and State have been misguided.  Separation of Church and State is not defined as prohibition of public discussion of what is right and wrong, but is defined as refraining from imposing a forced set of beliefs on citizens – whether those be Lutheran, Catholic, Muslim, or atheist beliefs.  Our determination not to jail a person for not sharing our Christian beliefs is not to be confused with our right to legislate ‘thou shalt not kill’ and ‘thou shalt not steal’ by a majority vote, and to encode these values into our laws.  And when citizens do encode their Christian values into law, as in the case of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), it is not for politically motivated, unelected, appointed “judges” to reverse the will of the electorate by decree.  To allow a minority to dictate the lives of the majority is foolhardy, and represents a misguided definition of tolerance.

Grass Roots Reclaim Morality

Now, as a nation,  we are suffering the results of our previous misguided “tolerance” of things we know to be wrong – of lying, of killing, of abuse of power by the elite.  And now, the people of the United States are beginning to take matters back into their own hands.  They are getting more involved, and they are participating in the democratic process with renewed vigor.  They are not afraid to demand ethical solutions to pressing problems.  Examples can be seen in recent successes of the 23402940_BG1Pro-Life movement, the Tea Party movement and in the 2 Million Biker ride taking place in Washington DC today.  Despite attempts by those in power to steer our nation in a less democratic and less Christian direction, ordinary citizens are waking up and are taking charge.

Religious Leaders Call the World to Public Prayer

This awakening and new-found activism, in addition to including political action, also includes prayer.  In the United States, 80% of people pray, and say that their prayers are answered.  So it would be logical to pray about the the things that are important.  Catholics have been participating in organized prayer efforts for religious freedom frequently during the past year. Catholics are centrally organized and thus may be more visible, but they are not alone.  Americans of all faiths have been praying and have been becoming more active in politics.  The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has become more outspoken, and the Pope has become more outspoken.

The USCCB has called for numerous Freedom of Religion rallies across the United States, and Catholics have gathered to pray for the restoration of religious freedom which was violated by the HHS Mandate.
Catholics in Madison, WI, started praying the rosary en masse every week on the Wisconsin State Capitol Steps in 2012.
For the first time in history, Pope Francis called for a Global Adoration effort, in which millions of Catholics participated on June 2, 2013.


Slide1Now, in the face of the Syria crisis, Pope Francis called for a Global day of Prayer and Fasting for peace on Saturday night, September 7th. He wrote a letter to Putin calling on G20 leaders to seek Syria peace talks, and tweeted against a US military strike in Syria. Millions participated in the global vigil, with 100,000 people gathering for 5 hours of vigil and prayer with Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Square.  The rosary was prayed.



So, Are We Surprised?

Within two days of the global vigil involving millions of people, we went
Obama pushing military strikes, Syria vowing retaliation on Israel,  Iran vowing revenge and threatening

Syria Vigil at Vatican to rape and kill Obama’s daughter, US Senators saying we could be nuked if we don’t play this right, and Russia announcing that she would shield Syria from US attack,
a gaffe made by Secretary of State John Kerry (aka “Lurch”), picked up by Putin, who took advantage of Kerry’s blunder to demand that Syria surrender chemical weapons, to Assad agreeing to surrender chemical weapons, to Congress, including the Democrat-contolled Senate backing off approval of Obama’s proposed military strikes, to Obama speaking to the nation and announcing that everything is on hold.

No military action, no political plan, no battle, no delegation needed.  Most surprising, with the most unlikely players.
From the brink of World War III involving the U.S., Syria, Iran, Israel, and Russia, to a defused situation and Vlad (Putin), the knight in shining armor, moralizing at Americans in the New York Times.

cosmic-640The hand of God in human events is most obvious in those events which defy the laws of probability, in those events which accomplish far-reaching, perhaps even global results, where human effort seems to play little or small part in accomplishing the result, and in those events where politicians and battles play no significant role.  Nobody anticipates the result, everyone is surprised by the result, the result is truly remarkable, and no fingerprints are left behind.
That is God’s style and His trademark.
-from The Missing Link- Redefining How We Approach Politics

This week’s events in Syria illustrate one clear case of God’s such involvement in human history.
When we pray and work against all odds, God helps.
And He usually does it in an unexpected way and with a great sense of humor-
Putin, the peacemaker, to the rescue, calling on the Nobel Peace Prize President Obama not to trigger World War III.

No Rose Colored Glasses3531123548_51d7ff0d2c

Make no mistake, the story is not over.
The idea of trusting Syria or Russia, and numerous other complexities and hurdles still have to be considered.
But the bottom line is that three days ago we were almost bombing Syria against the will of the people of the United States, and now Barack Obama has called for a pause.
I, for one, have certainly breathed a sigh of relief.

Thanks be to God!

 Future Plan

Quoting from  The Missing Link – Redefining How We Approach Politics, in which this new approach to politics, politics from an educated religious perspective, was outlined:

Future Directions

The answers are pretty simple, and are available to anyone.

View all of life, including American politics, from a educated religious perspective, and thus refuse to separate Church and State.

Quote from the Liturgy of the Hours, a set of daily prayers based on Holy Scripture and available to all:

If the Lord had not been on our side….
Then would the waters have engulfed us,
the torrent gone over us;
over our head would have swept
the raging waters.
……………………………………...-Psalm 123 (124)

It’s very simple: stick strictly to God’s law, pray, and wait.
So cool to watch as it works!

Related Posts:

The Missing Link – Redefining How We Approach Politics

Pope Francis Takes On Obama

Political Puzzle Pieces Falling into Place

Enjoying the Progress? Join the Prayer

Global Adoration- Say What?


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