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    • To my Republican Friends July 6, 2020
      You voted for Trump even though you didn't like him. Doubted his character. Questioned his fitness for the job. Yet, your aversion to Hillary was even greater [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
      Obie Holmen
    • Wormwood and Gall a Midwest Book Award Finalist May 4, 2020
      The Midwest Independent Publishers Association (MIPA) recently named Wormwood and Gall as one of three finalists for a Midwest Book Award in the Religion/Philosophy category. The awards program, which is organized by MIPA, recognizes quality in independent publishing in the Midwest. [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other co […]
      Obie Holmen
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    • Autumn, Adnan . . . and Art? October 22, 2021
      As I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve been enjoying experimenting with Prisma, a photo-editing mobile application (or app) that “uses neural networks and artificial intelligence to apply artistic effects to transform images.” I quite like some of the effects that can be created using this particular app.Lately, the two subjects of my use of the Prisma filt […]
      noreply@blogger.com (Michael J. Bayly)
    • Gone But Not Forgotten October 19, 2021
      See also the related Wild Reed posts:• Remembering Elisabeth Sladen, Ten Years On• Nine Years On, a Poignant Farewell to Sarah Jane• As Doctor Who Celebrates its 50th Anniversary, Sarah Jane Smith is Voted #1 Favorite CompanionSee also the following chronologically-ordered posts:• Blast from the Past: Sarah Jane Smith Returns to Doctor Who• What Sarah Jane D […]
      noreply@blogger.com (Michael J. Bayly)
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    • Ruth Krall, A Bilgrimage Bibliography April 2, 2021
       A Bilgrimage BiographyRuth Elizabeth Krall, MSN, PhDNote: Since 2015 my friend William D. Lindsey (Bill) has published my work on his blog Bilgrimage. At this time, the blog is inactive, so I have decided to pull together my various posts so that future researchers and academics can find them in one place.  I have arranged this bibliography so that more rec […]
      noreply@blogger.com (William D. Lindsey)
    • Ruth Krall, "Persephone’s Journey into the Underworld: Lessons for Our Time" February 3, 2021
      Ancient portrayal of Demeter and Persephone, Apulian red-figure loutrophoro, ca. 4th century BCE, from the J. Paul Getty Museum, at the Theoi Project websiteWhen I announced at the start of this year that I've decided no longer to maintain Bilgrimage, I also noted that if readers have something they'd like me to consider for posting here down the r […]
      noreply@blogger.com (William D. Lindsey)
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    • the way ahead March 23, 2013
      My current blog is called the way ahead.
      noreply@blogger.com (PrickliestPear)
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    • A saint for the millenials: Carlo Acutis beatified today in Assisi. October 10, 2020
       A saint for the millenials: the young Italian teen, Carlo Acutis, who died in 2006 of galloping Leukemia, will be beatified today in Assisi by Pope Francis (last step before being officially declared a saint). Carlo came from a luke warm Catholic family, but at the age of 7, when he received his first 'Holy Communion', he displayed an astonishing […]
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    • Ronan Park and Jack Vidgen: The Travails of Gay Pop Stars October 28, 2019
      (Jack Vidgen)Quite by accident, through a comment from a performance arts colleague of mine, I stumbled across the recent bios of two boy teen singing sensations, both of whom made a big splash worldwide 8 years ago. The first, Jack Vidgen, won Australia's Got Talent Contest in 2011 at the age of 14, primarily for his powerful renditions of Whitney Hust […]
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    • Manchin October 22, 2021
      Video from writer Don Winslow. I am so sick of Joe Manchin ruining every effort of Democrats to make the American people's lives better. His latest? Threatening to quit the Democratic party if Biden doesn't bend to his will on the reconciliation bill.
      noreply@blogger.com (crystal)

The Vatican: The Show Must Go On

“The main mission of the Holy See is to help bring the message of the Gospel to the ends of the earth,” a Vatican official recently claimed. But they dedicate far more time and resources to presenting a false façade of moral integrity to the world.

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The Vatican Trial Part I: Institutional Sleaze

A Vatican trial began on July 27. Ten defendants were charged with a various financial crimes including fraud and embezzlement. The accusations show an organization where corruption usually goes unnoticed in a city/state whose leaders consider themselves to be so superior in religious training and practice that they are the sole legitimate interpreters of what is sin for the rest of us.

Most of the defendants were involved in purchasing a commercial building in London.

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The Vatican Trial Part II: Long on Process, Short on Justice

The Vatican trial that began on July 27 with the naming of 10 defendants for various financial crimes is going to take a very long time due to the “complexity” involved with having so many defendants, cruxnow.com noted. Most were involved in the Vatican’s purchase of a London commercial building.

The trial will be lengthy also because of the numerous objections brought by the defense attorneys. Some “were raised against the constitution of the court itself and the Vatican’s sovereign legal system,” pillarcatholic.com stated.

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An Opus Dei Supreme Court

On July 1, the Supreme Court decided two major cases. In both, the 6-3 majority – of whom 5 of the 6 are Catholic – dealt a grievous blow against democracy by increasing the power of the Republican minority and the plutocracy. This is a reminder that Opus Dei has a malevolent influence over the judicial branch of our government.

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UN Rebukes Pope Francis on Child Sex Abuse – Again

A letter sent to the Vatican in April was published on the website of the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on June 21. UN human rights experts expressed “utmost concern” about “the apparent pervasiveness of child sexual abuse cases” in the Catholic Church.

This was the third time during his pontificate that UN representatives made clear to Pope Francis the ways he has refused to protect our children and told him what measures needed to be taken.

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Wholesale, Systematic, Organized Rape of Our Children and Media Praise for Pope Francis

“Everybody would know for sure that the Catholic Church has been part of the wholesale, systematic, and organized rape of our children if Archbishop Gregory Aymond testified, if he was deposed,” Richard Windmann told reporter Helen Lewis.

Aymond, head of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, wasn’t deposed nor did he have to testify because he had filed for bankruptcy two weeks before the case was to begin in court. “This a disappointing but not surprising move, as Archbishop Aymond now follows in the footsteps of dozens of Catholic officials who have chosen to declare bankruptcy rather than allow survivors of clergy sexual abuse to bring their claims forward in open court,” said Windmann one of the founders of Survivors of Childhood Sex Abuse.

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Future Pope

The Vatican has a PR problem. In an international poll, Pope Francis is less admired than even Donald Trump. While Trump is ranked as the 15th most admired man in the world in the 2020 survey, Pope Francis is ranked at 18. The Dalai Lama ranked number 8. “More than 45,000 people in 42 countries and territories were interviewed to compile the list,” YouGov published in September.

Due to the adulation of Pope Francis by the U.S. for-profit mainstream media, it’s not surprising that the pontiff ranks much higher in this country, almost tied with the Dalai Lama at numbers 8 and 9 respectively.

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American Catholicism: Headed Towards a Dead End

Although “nearly one-third of American adults (31.7%) say they were raised Catholic, only about one in five (20.8%) identified as Catholic” in a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center. “The share of adults who identify as Christians fell from 78% to just under 71%” between 2007 and 2014. But “within Christianity the greatest net losses, by far, have been experienced by Catholics,” according to the “America’s Changing Religious Landscape” study.

The survey also showed that – since 34% of Catholics were Latino and 8% Black, Asian or other – the number of white Catholics had fallen to less than 12% of the population.

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The Moral Bankruptcy of U.S. Bishops

By their sometimes enthusiastic, sometimes tacit, support of Trump’s carnage, this episcopate has shown themselves to be devoid of morals and decency. For over three decades, American bishops have been an adjunct of the GOP. Abortion is their code word for “vote Republican.” But given the magnitude of the clerical sex abuse, they have shown their contempt for children. (See appendix if further explanation is needed.)

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The Disappearing Religious Right

“White grievances” supplant “moral values” as a major impetus to get out the vote for the Republican Party.

Data gathered after the 2020 Presidential Election show that “moral values” as a motivation to get out the vote has greatly decreased. Only 3% of voters said abortion was the most important issue facing the country according to the AP VoteCast Survey. Same-sex marriage wasn’t even a consideration.

In 2010, 43% of voters considered abortion to be a “very important issue” and 32% of voters thought same-sex marriage also to be a “very important issue” according to a Pew Research Center  survey.

The largest group of 2020 voters, 41%, said the coronavirus pandemic was the most important issue and they voted 73% for Biden per the AP VoteCast Survey. Predating the pandemic and “based on analyses of survey data of the whole U.S. population examining both [2016] voting behavior and attitudes toward blacks and immigrants … Trump’s core supporters are working-class white men, the group most racially resentful and most opposed to further immigration.” This is true especially “when we look at lower-paid working-class jobs [that] typically require high school degrees or less and tend to pay low wages.” This analysis was presented in July 2019 by Donald Tomaskovic-Devey and Eric Hoyt, directors at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst’s Center for Employment Equity.

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