All articles from June 22, 2020


News

Trump’s top law enforcement officer supports Idaho banning men from women’s sports

'Allowing biological males to compete in all-female sports is fundamentally unfair to female athletes,' Attorney General William P. Barr wrote, representing the Trump Justice Department.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 8:48 pm EST
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Attorney General William P. Barr. Leah Millis-Pool / Getty Images
Dorothy Cummings McLean Dorothy Cummings McLean Follow Dorothy
By Dorothy Cummings McLean

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) ― The U.S. Justice Department is backing Idaho’s Fairness in Women’s Sports Act against a legal challenge made on behalf of male athletes who call themselves female and want to compete against women.

On Friday, June 19, the Department of Justice filed a statement of interest in Idaho federal court supporting the state’s legislation.

The act has been challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and Legal Voice, who are representing a consortium including Lindsay Hecox, a boy at Boise State University who wants to compete in athletics against girls.

According to the ACLU, Hecox, 19, “wants to run on the track team so she [sic] can form friendships with other girls [sic].”

“I just want to be one of them,” the broad-shouldered Hecox said in a P.R. video, sporting mascara and curls. “I am one of them.”

According to an article Hecox wrote for Teen Vogue, the athlete began presenting as a woman only after graduating from high school. Hecox ran for his high school track and field team for three years and for the cross-country team for three.  

Critics of the Fairness Act say it violates the Equal Protection Clause in the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Justice Department does not agree.

“Allowing biological males to compete in all-female sports is fundamentally unfair to female athletes,” said U.S. attorney general William P. Barr.

“Under the Constitution, the Equal Protection Clause allows Idaho to recognize the physiological differences between the biological sexes in athletics,” he continued. 

“Because of these differences, the Fairness Act’s limiting of certain athletic teams to biological females provides equal protection.”

Barr underscored that women’s sports teams were founded in the first place to ensure that women — i.e., “biological females” — are able to compete in sports. He indicated that limiting participation in women’s sports to females does the same. 

“This limitation is based on the same exact interest that allows the creation of sex-specific athletic teams in the first place — namely, the goal of ensuring that biological females have equal athletic opportunities,” Barr said. 

“Single-sex athletics is rooted in the reality of biological differences between the sexes and should stay rooted in objective biological fact.”

Republican Governor Brad Little signed Idaho’s Fairness in Women’s Sports Act (Fairness Act) on March 30 this year, and it should go into effect in July 2020. Lawyers for the ACLU and Legal Voice filed a lawsuit in April in an attempt to stop the bill from becoming law.

A statement by the U.S. Department of Justice says that “the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution does not require States to abandon their efforts to provide biological women with equal opportunity to compete for, and enjoy the life-long benefits that flow from, participation in school athletics in order to accommodate the team preferences of transgender athletes.”

“Put differently, the Constitution does not require Idaho to provide the special treatment plaintiffs request, under which biological males are allowed to compete against biological females if and only if the biological males are transgender.”

The Fairness Act legislates that teams should be designated for males, men, or boys, or for females, women, or girls, or for mixed groups (both males and females). It states also that males may not participate in teams reserved for females, women, or girls.

The “legislative findings” and “purpose” in House Bill 500 underscore that there are biological differences between females and males. These differences, especially as they relate “to natural levels of testosterone ... have life-long effects, including those more important for success in sport: categorically different strength, speed and endurance.”  

The bill also cited research showing that “the benefits that natural testosterone provides to male athletes is not diminished through the use of puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones.”

“A recent study on the impact of such treatments found that even ‘after 12 month of hormonal therapy,’ a man who identifies as a woman and is taking cross-sex hormones ‘had an absolute advantage’ over female athletes and ‘will still likely have performance benefits’ over women,” it states. 

It argues that allowing women to compete only against other women furthers women’s equality in the United States.

“Having separate sex-specific teams furthers efforts to promote sex equality,” the bill states.

“Sex-specific teams accomplish this by providing opportunities for female athletes to demonstrate their skill, strength, and athletic abilities while also providing them with opportunities to obtain recognition and accolades, college scholarships, and the numerous other long-term benefits that flow from success in athletic endeavors.”

Idaho is the first state to pass a bill protecting the right of women not to have to compete against males in sports. The Fairness Act does not prohibit females from participating in men’s sports.


  idaho, sports, transgenderism, william barr, women's sports

News

Blessed Sacrament and tabernacle stolen from North Carolina Catholic Church

'I dare speculate,' one parishioner reported, 'that the thief had demonic intentions.'
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 8:37 pm EST
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Dorothy Cummings McLean Dorothy Cummings McLean Follow Dorothy
By Dorothy Cummings McLean

BOONE, North Carolina, June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) ― Parishioners at St. Elizabeth of the Hill Country Catholic Church were devastated by the news that thieves had stolen their tabernacle with the Blessed Sacrament inside.

“The Eucharist is the center of the life of all Catholics, and we are devastated that our Lord was taken from the sanctuary of our parish church. In a very real way, God himself was taken from us last week, just after we completed the celebration of [the octave of] Corpus Christi,” cantor Matthew Mellon told LifeSiteNews today by email.

Mellon said the tabernacle was stolen from the Boone, North Carolina church between the evening Mass celebrated on Tuesday, June 16 and the arrival of parish staff the following morning. He fears that the Blessed Sacrament was stolen for occult rituals.

“Our parishioners are heartbroken,” he stated in an earlier email.

“I dare speculate that the thief had demonic intentions because many lighter valuable items were passed over, including a jeweled monstrance, in the sanctuary.”

Police were notified and are asking for anyone with security footage of the area to come forward. Anyone with information about the crime should call Crime Stoppers at (828) 268-6959 / (828) 737-0125 or the Boone Police Department at (828) 268-6900.

A message posted to St. Elizabeth’s website stated that the thief or thieves seem to have climbed in through a window “and did not take anything else or cause any damage.”

“We are calling for prayers and the safe return of the Blessed Sacrament,” the author wrote.

“We pray that the hearts of those responsible may be moved to return the tabernacle to us, but most especially the Blessed Sacrament,” the author continued. “Please pray and offer reparation for the desecration of the church and the theft of the Blessed Sacrament.”

On Thursday night, Father Brendan Buckler presided over a Holy Hour with Adoration and Benediction so that parishioners could offer reparation on the thief or thieves’ behalf. The Mass celebrating the Feast of the Sacred Heart on Friday was well attended.

Matthew Mellon made the following plea: “I know this is probably futile, but if the person who removed the tabernacle reads these words, I beg you to return the contents of this tabernacle to any Catholic church.”

He told LifeSiteNews that his parish community is “saying a novena of prayers in reparation to the Sacred Heart and many rosaries in hope that the Lord will be returned to a sanctuary unharmed.”

Theft of the Blessed Sacrament is a regular occurrence, LifeSiteNews was told last year by exorcist Fr. Chad Ripperger. In May of 2019, LifeSiteNews discovered nine consecrated hosts for sale on the handicraft site Etsy.com. The vendor stated on the website that the hosts were “to abuse for classic black fairs or black magic purposes.”

Fr. Ripperger assured LifeSiteNews that although God is offended by the abuse of the Blessed Sacrament, the Lord does not personally suffer.

“According to the theologians, Doctors of the Church and saints, in the Eucharist we only act upon the accidents of the Bread and not on the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord,” he explained. “Therefore, He does not suffer when something physically happens to the accidents of the Bread.” 

The Catholic Church teaches that during the consecration of the Mass, the Eucharistic wafers become the body and blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ while retaining only the sensory elements (i.e., accidents) of bread.

To add your prayers to those of the parishioners of St. Elizabeth of the Hill Country Catholic Church in Boone, North Carolina, please see here the Novena of the Seven Penitential Psalms in reparation for the profanation of the Blessed Sacrament.


A tabernacle identical to the one stolen from St. Elizabeth.


  blessed sacrament, catholic, desecration, eucharist, north carolina, occult, theft

News

YouTube puts ‘offensive’ warning on LifeSite video on Soros role in race riots

While the video contains news footage from the riots, including fire, smashed windows, vandalism, and clashes with police, it does not show blood, gore, or human injury, let alone vulgar language, sexual imagery, or any other content generally understood to be unsuitable for younger viewers.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 7:50 pm EST
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Calvin Freiburger Calvin Freiburger Follow Calvin
By Calvin Freiburger

PETITION: Investigate George Soros' role in funding domestic terrorism! Sign the petition here.

June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – YouTube has placed a LifeSiteNews video on George Soros’ support for the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement in Restricted Mode for unspecified reasons, forcing viewers to click a warning agreeing to see “inappropriate or offensive content” before they can watch it.

In the video, LifeSite’s Gualberto Garcia Jones calls on law enforcement to investigate the role of Soros, a wealthy financier who has bankrolled a wide range of left-wing causes across the globe, in supporting the protests and riots that have spanned the country following a Minnesota police officer’s killing of an unarmed black man.

“Remember the big donor meeting organized by the Soros-funded Democracy Alliance just six days after the November election?” Jones asks. “The president of that organization – who, by the way, was a Soros employee prior to presiding the Alliance – is a man named Gara LaMarche. In his latest post on the Democracy Alliance’s website under the president’s blog section, Mr. LaMarche openly accuses the president of the United States of ‘blatant racism’ and directs donors to the very organizations organizing the violent protests. This is not a conspiracy theory; it is right there on their website for all to see.”

Jones also notes that Soros himself talks openly about his willingness to see societal crises used as openings to implement his preferred policies. “Even before the pandemic hit, I realized that we were in a revolutionary moment where what would be impossible or even inconceivable in normal times had become not only possible, but probably absolutely necessary,” he declared in a May 11 interview.

This message appears to be disfavored by the powers-that-be at the Google-owned YouTube, however. Clicking through to the video brings up a black screen bearing the message: “The following content has been identified by the YouTube community as inappropriate or offensive to some audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.”

Viewers must click “I understand and wish to proceed” before being able to watch the video. A notice added beneath the description labels it as an “age-restricted video (based on Community Guidelines),” meaning it cannot be viewed through a computer using age-restriction, unless a parent specifically goes in and allows it.

To be sure, LifeSite’s video takes a strong position on a contentious subject, as do millions of YouTube videos not subject to such warnings. However, while the video contains news footage from the riots, including fire, smashed windows, vandalism, and clashes with police, it does not show blood, gore, or human injury, let alone vulgar language, sexual imagery, or any other content generally understood to be unsuitable for younger viewers.

Conservatives have long been wary of YouTube due to recurring cases of apparent left-wing discrimination by the video giant and its parent company Google. The platform has deleted investigation footage from pro-life group Live Action, censored discussion of transgenderism and mental illness, and, according to an ex-Google software engineer, it skews search results in direct response to left-wing pressure.

YouTube’s Restricted Mode has also been used against dozens of educational videos produced by conservative commentator Dennis Prager, despite containing no age-inappropriate content or other violations of the website’s Terms of Use. 

Meanwhile, Floyd’s killing was instantly and unanimously condemned, and the police officers involved have been charged with murder. As to BLM’s broader claim of “systemic racism” in law enforcement, research actually shows that police are not disproportionately likely to use excessive lethal force against black suspects. At the same time, BLM supports “reproductive justice that gives us autonomy over our bodies.” An estimated 40 percent of all U.S. abortions are sought by black women, meaning that Black Lives Matter supports the annual elimination of more than 344,800 black lives every year.

The organization also says, “We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and ‘villages’ that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.”

“We foster a queer‐affirming network,” BLM continues. “When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual (unless s/he or they disclose otherwise).”


  big tech, black lives matter, george soros, google, online censorship, protests, riots, youtube

News

Minnesota Catholic Conference: Vandalized Christopher Columbus statue should be restored

'The celebration by many in the community of the statue’s lawless removal also shows the prevalence of fake history. Columbus is not a canonized saint, but he is not a villain, either,' commented Jason Adkins, executive director of the Minnesota Catholic Conference.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 6:53 pm EST
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A statue of Christopher Columbus, which was toppled to the ground by protesters, is loaded onto a truck on the grounds of the State Capitol on June 10, 2020 in St. Paul, Minnesota. Photo by Stephen Maturen / Getty Images
Lianne Laurence Lianne Laurence Follow Lianne
By Lianne Laurence

PETITION: Urge U.S. Catholic Bishops Conference to defend Catholic heritage and statues! Sign the petition here.

SAINT PAUL, Minnesota, June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — The statue of Christopher Columbus in Saint Paul that protesters ripped down earlier this month should be restored to public view, says the public policy office for Minnesota’s Catholic bishops. 

Activists led by members of the American Indian Movement (AIM) used ropes to topple the 10-foot bronze statue of Columbus in the state Capitol from its granite pedestal on June 10, reported the Minnesota Reformer.

Protestors then danced around the statue singing and drumming.

The helmeted state troopers responsible for security at the Capitol stood at a distance and did not try to stop the vandalism, which came in the wake of nationwide riots and demonstrations sparked by the May 25 death of George Floyd, reported TwinCities Pioneer Press.

The protesters included Dakota and Ojibwe Indians, who said they see Columbus as a symbol of genocide against Native Americans, and that they made many attempts to remove the statue by legitimate means to no avail, that outlet reported.

“For healing to happen, this needed to happen,” said Mike Forcia, chairman of the Twin Cities American Indian Movement and a member of the Bad River Band of Ojibwe. “It was here for far too long. It’s a slap in the face to all Native people and all people of color.”

No one was arrested during or after the incident, but state troopers told Forcia he could be arrested in a few days on charges of destroying public property, Reuters reported.

Minnesota’s Democrat Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan, a member of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe and the highest ranking native woman elected to executive office, said in a statement that the arrival of Columbus “set in motion centuries of violence and genocide against the Indigenous people who already lived here.” 

Added Flanagan: “I can’t say I’m sad the statue of Christopher Columbus is gone. I’m not… . All Minnesotans should feel welcome at the Minnesota State Capitol, and our state is long overdue for a hard look at the symbols, statues and icons that were created without the input of many of our communities.”

But Jason Adkins, executive director of the Minnesota Catholic Conference (MCC), has a different view.

LifeSiteNews asked Archbishop of Minneapolis and Saint Paul Bernard Hebda for a comment on the incident, and his office forwarded the request to the MCC, which is the “public policy voice of the Catholic Church in Minnesota,” according to its website.

Hebda is the MCC’s president, and its members are seven active and three retired bishops of Minnesota.

“The negligent failure by public officials and safety officers to protect the Christopher Columbus statue—a statue erected to celebrate greater inclusiveness of Italians in Minnesota—should be a cause of concern for all Minnesotans, regardless of their views on Columbus himself,” Adkins told LifeSiteNews in an email.

“We cannot allow persons or activists of politically favored groups to destroy property, public or private, simply because an object or building causes offense,” he said. 

“The celebration by many in the community of the statue’s lawless removal also shows the prevalence of fake history. Columbus is not a canonized saint, but he is not a villain, either. As described by Pope Leo XIII, his motives were [exemplary], and it was an extraordinary achievement to connect the peoples of two hemispheres,” Adkins said.

“To say Columbus was a perpetrator of genocide makes a mockery of the term,” he added.

“I have made inquiries to ensure that the process for restoring the Columbus statue to public grounds is transparent. The statue should be restored to public view,” Adkins said.

Also on June 10, protestors pulled down a Columbus statue in Byrd Park in Richmond, Virginia, covered it in paint, set it on fire, and threw it into a lake, and then attacked an NBC12 reporter and demanded he leave the scene, NBC12 reported.

The same evening, unidentified vandals decapitated the marble statue of Columbus in Boston’s North End, while in Miami, police arrested seven people at a demonstration after identifying them from surveillance videos as the individuals who vandalized statues of Columbus and explorer Juan Ponce De Leon, CBS News reported.

The protestors sprayed red paint on Columbus’s hands and face, as well as painting a hammer and sickle, images of fists, the name of George Floyd, and Black Lives Matter on the base of the statues.

A police statement said officers were at the demonstration to find those responsible for vandalizing the statues and that “while initiating the arrests,” several protesters assaulted them and damaged a police vehicle.

Miami’s Chief of Police Jorge Colina said in a statement that while police support non-violent protests, “there will be zero tolerance for those who hide behind the peaceful protesters to incite riots, damage property, and hurt members of the public or our officers,” The Hill reported. 

LifeSiteNews asked Boston’s Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston, Richmond’s Bishop Christopher Knestout, and Miami’s Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami what they made of these incidents. Representatives for Knestout and Wenski said the prelates had no comment. O’Malley’s office did not respond.

Over the weekend in California, protestors tore down two statues of St. Junipero Serra, who was canonized by Pope Francis on U.S. soil in 2015.

The oft-cited reports and allegations of Columbus’s brutal treatment of the indigenous peoples of the lands he claimed for Spain stand in marked contrast to the late Father John Hardon’s vigorous defense of the Genoese adventurer, whom he lauded as “the destined herald of the true faith to half of the human race.”


  antifa, bernard hebda, catholic, christopher columbus, george floyd, minnesota, minnesota catholic conference, riots, statues, vandalism

News

We need the truth now more than ever

Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 4:47 pm EST
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LifeSiteNews staff
By LifeSiteNews staff

June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Now, more than ever before, media has the power to influence and shift the cultural paradigm. 2020 has tested this, and mainstream media has been successful in pushing its anti-life, anti-family, and anti-Christian agenda beyond what we ever imagined it would – and the masses are blindly following.  

This is why we simply cannot sit by and allow the complete destruction of life, faith, family and freedom. If we don’t speak up, we will see history unfold in front of our eyes.  

Though everything happening in our world right now is overwhelming, you can make a difference. You have the power to defend life, family, faith, and freedom by being a catalyst of positive change.  

One tangible and sustainable way to make an impact is by amplifying the voice of LifeSiteNews through your generosity. By supporting our news reporting during these unprecedented times, when media has the power to shift the culture, you will support a clear and truthful voice that is cutting through the fog and confusion of the mainstream media’s lies.   

Defending the values that we hold most dear is only possible because of our readers’ support. As a reader-funded organization, we have the ability to use the power of the media to defend life, faith, family, and freedom – and as a result, change the culture.  

Will you answer the call today by joining us on the Frontlines of this battle for culture? Will you help LifesiteNews to counter the lies of the mainstream, defend the truth, and in turn save lives?  

I hope so.  

Without your support, social media corporations will continue to silence the conservative Christian voice and mainstream media’s lies will go unchecked. What this means for our culture is more abortion, more parental rights stripped away from us, more persecution against Christians and against our defense of traditional marriage. 

Will you be one of the remaining supporters we need to help us reach our fundraising goal of $300,000 during our current Summer fundraising campaign?  

With just 5 days left to reach our goal, I hope you will consider chipping in a gift of $25, $50, or $100 or more to ensure we can continue to drive and transform the media narrative. To make your most generous gift today, use this secure link: https://give.lifesitenews.com  

Please join the army of LifeSiteNews readers, just like you, who provide the tools our reporters need to report on developments related to life, faith, family, and freedom.  

With the trampling of speech rights and viewpoint discrimination that we still face, it is becoming even more difficult to get our word out to those who need to hear it. And it will only continue to get worse.  

After reading many of our reports from the last few weeks you can see that we are facing a monumental battle against the culture of death. Yet amidst every effort to discount and silence us from the social media Goliath, you must help us press on.  

The war against the values on life and family is waging on. Our readers have the right to be informed on developments related to life, family, faith, and culture and it is our mission to unapologetically speak the truth no matter the cost. And the cost is great.  

We are counting on you to help us raise the funds needed this campaign to continue our mission as the only international pro-life and pro-family news source.  

Witnessing thousands of our readers make the commitment to keep this news service fully operational is a sure sign that the movement to continue to fight and sacrifice for life, faith and family is very much alive. We are always encouraged by this - and you should be too!  

I’d like to share some of the reader comments with you now, and hopefully it will give you a better understanding of why your support is SO needed at this time to continue our news reporting:  
 

  • “Your work is invaluable and emotionally draining I am sure. We are grateful and especially appreciate action alerts. I am mostly homebound, so to be able to stand for truth through this vehicle is greatly appreciated. May God always guard, guide, strengthen and comfort all of you.” - Adele; California, United States 

  • “Appreciate your website.... your lead articles are always well documented and are typically the stories that others refuse to cover. We need her the unwelcome truth at times so we know what and how to pray. Thank you and God bless.”  - Joseph; Ohio, United States 

  • “As usual your organization is the lone voice for sanity in a world where everything is up-side down. Keep up the good and crucial work.” - James; Alberta, Canada 

  • “I appreciate the "inside story" information you give us since we don't get it from the rest of the media.” - Patricia; New York, United States 

  • “LifesiteNews is important to me. The subjects you cover and the truthfulness and professionalism of your coverage is NOT available anywhere else in Canada... I hope that enough people, who profess to be pro-Life, or even Christian, will support you, so that you can continue to provide this very needed ministry. God bless.” - Willi; Ontario, Canada 

  • “Please keep up your courageous work in speaking boldly in the public square against those who who want to silence people who are faithful to Christian teaching on issues relating to sexual behaviors, gender identity, family, marriage and life. God bless your work!” - Angeles;  Newfoundland, Canada 

 

We send all donors’ comments to the entire staff to encourage them in their pro-life work, and to remind them to pray for the needs of our donors. In fact, among other needs, we pray as a staff for all our donors every single morning - we understand the great sacrifices they make to keep our mission operational! 

I humbly challenge those who have not yet donated to make the most generous donation you can. To donate now, please follow this secure donation link: https://give.lifesitenews.com

Without your partnership in our mission, the war on the conservative viewpoint will win and the narrative of the mainstream media will be the only voice the world hears. But with your support, we can continue to stand strong and bring a powerful, transformative light into the darkness.  


  censorship, fundraising campaign, mainstream media, summer fundraising, summer fundraising 2020, truth

News

Seventh Circuit rules Illinois can restrict churches to 10 people

While caring for the hungry 'requires teams of people to work together in physical spaces ... churches can feed the spirit in other ways,' the court ruled.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 4:05 pm EST
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Calvin Freiburger Calvin Freiburger Follow Calvin
By Calvin Freiburger

PETITION: Tell politicians not to discriminate against churches when reopening society! Sign the petition here.

June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against an Illinois church suing the state over its COVID-19 restrictions on freedom of religious assembly, potentially setting up another First Amendment showdown before the nation’s highest court.

In May, Illinois Democrat Gov. J.B. Pritzker laid out a five-phase plan for lifting the state’s public-health emergency, which among other things holds that, should COVID-19 cases continue to decline, public gatherings such as religious services would still be limited to 50 people until the release of “a vaccine or highly effective treatment widely available or the elimination of any new cases over a sustained period.”

In the meantime, churches had been limited to a cap of just ten people, prompting numerous lawsuits from churches all over the state. Under pressure, Pritzker issued a new set of guidelines on May 28, which changed the ten-person limit from a mandate to a suggestion.

Despite the governor backing down, the Christian nonprofit Liberty Counsel (LC) continued its lawsuit on behalf of Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church and Logos Baptist Ministries, noting that Pritzker could still re-impose the limit in the future. 

“Unless and until there is a judicial declaration that Governor Pritzker has acted unconstitutionally thus far, there is nothing keeping him from changing his mind again, whether in this crisis or any future crisis,” LC declared last month.

Yet the Seventh Circuit ruled against Illinois Christians last week, Bloomberg reported. While the three-judge panel rejected Pritzker’s request to dismiss the case out of hand, it ruled that the 10-person limit was constitutional.

It rejected the comparison of churches to grocery stores, which can allow an unlimited number of people inside, on the grounds that speaking and singing can spread COVID-19 through aerosolized saliva droplets, as with lectures or concerts.

Caring for the hungry or homeless “requires teams of people to work together in physical spaces, but churches can feed the spirit in other ways” such as live-streaming sermons, the court ruled.

“How can the state divide between ‘religious’ and ‘secular’ activity in the same church building?” LC’s Mat Staver asked. “This is clearly not the role of the government. So, while churches can feed, shelter overnight, and provide ‘necessities of life’ to an unlimited number of people, the crowd must be reduced to 10 people or less when the pastor leads a worship service or prayer. The court brushed off this obvious discrimination.”

As for what comes next, Staver assured the public that Liberty Counsel intends to take the case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, if necessary.

“Our next step will be to ask the full panel of judges at the 7th Circuit to review the case,” he explained. “This case and the conflicts now among the courts of appeal provide an opportunity to ask the Supreme Court to review the matter at the appropriate time.”

As of June 22, the United States is estimated to have seen more than 2.3 million COVID-19 cases, with more than 122,000 deaths and 984,000 recoveries. An estimated 40 percent of those deaths have come from nursing homes. Illinois has been the fourth-hardest-hit state, with 137,224 cases, 6,671 deaths, and 103,806 recoveries.

Readers can click here for LifeSiteNews’ live updates on the coronavirus and its impact all over the world.


  covid-19, democrats, illinois, j.b. pritzker, liberty counsel, lockdown orders, mat staver, religious freedom

News

Amazon blocks ads for book on transgender harm to kids, publisher says

The online retailer considers the contents of 'Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters' to be 'objectionable.'
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 2:22 pm EST
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Jane Marie Georgia Facebook
Calvin Freiburger Calvin Freiburger Follow Calvin
By Calvin Freiburger

PETITION: Tell Trump Christians can’t accept SCOTUS ruling imposing LGBT ideology! Sign the petition here.

June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Amazon has suspended advertising for a book detailing the harm that gender confusion inflicts on children as “objectionable content,” according to a top publisher of conservative books.

Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters, by The Wall Street Journal’s Abigail Shrier, explores the phenomenon of rapid-onset gender dysphoria (ROGD), a term coined in 2018 by Brown University behavioral scientist Lisa Littman. She found that a significant percentage of gender dysphoria among minors came not from innate feelings of discontent with one’s true sex but from outside influence.

For her book, Shrier “dug deep into the trans epidemic, talking to the girls, their agonized parents, and the counselors and doctors who enable gender transitions, as well as to ‘detransitioners’ — young women who bitterly regret what they have done to themselves,” according to the product description. “Coming out as transgender immediately boosts these girls’ social status, Shrier found, but once they take the first steps of transition, it is not easy to walk back.”

Fox News reported that it has obtained an email from Amazon to Regnery explaining that it was blocking ads for Irreversible Damage on the grounds that it “contains elements that may not be appropriate for all audiences, which may include ad copy/book content that infers or claims to diagnose, treat, or question sexual orientation.”

“Apparently, you're allowed to promote gender ideology; you're just not allowed to question it,” Shrier lamented.

"The cancel culture has made it clear that it despises diversity of opinion, and it will not tolerate science, data, facts, or anything that contradicts the approved narrative," a Regnery spokesperson told Fox. “Amazon is one of our most important ad platforms. It would be a significant hit to our promotional efforts to lose this opportunity."

Regnery also released a tweet thread detailing how Amazon promotes pro-LGBT books and products in its search results, as well as “underwear for men to pretend they have female parts,” complete with suggestive product images:

This action against the book is nothing new for Amazon, which allows the far-left Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) to identify groups to exclude from the company’s Amazon Smile charity program, has banned the sale of books that promote reparative therapy for overcoming unwanted homosexual attraction, and most recently tried to block a booklet dissenting from the conventional narrative on COVID-19. The internet giant has also lobbied against state laws protecting religious adoption agencies and keeping men out of women’s sports.

“Nearly every force in society is aligned against” parents who want to save their daughters from transgender ideology, Shrier wrote last year. “Churches scramble to rewrite their liturgies for greater ‘inclusiveness.’ Therapists and psychiatrists undermine parental authority with immediate affirmation of teens’ self-diagnoses. Campus counselors happily refer students to clinics that dispense hormones on the first visit. Laws against ‘conversion therapy,’ which purports to cure homosexuality, are on the books in 14 states and the District of Columbia. These statutes also prohibit ‘efforts to change a patient’s ... gender identity,’ in the words of the New Jersey law — effectively threatening counselors who might otherwise dissuade teens from proceeding with hormone treatment or surgery.”


  abigail shrier, amazon, big tech, gender confusion, irreversible damage, lgbt, online censorship, rapid onset gender dysphoria, regnery publishing, transgenderism

News

US science mag explains how to destroy a ‘statue that you decide you no longer like’

The article on how to 'use science' to tear down or melt statues deemed 'racist' or unacceptable to leftists comes as rioters and far-left agitators damage statues of everyone from Confederate generals to Gandhi to Catholic saints.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 1:21 pm EST
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A vandalized statue of a Confederate general in Washington, D.C. Alex Wroblewski / Getty Images
Paul Smeaton Paul Smeaton Follow Paul
By Paul Smeaton

PETITION: Investigate George Soros' role in funding domestic terrorism! Sign the petition here.

UNITED STATES, June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — A popular U.S. science and “do-it-yourself” instruction magazine has published an article advising readers how to pull down statues, as riots around the country continue the destruction of public and private buildings.

Popular Mechanics, first founded in Chicago in 1902, last week celebrated the toppling of “racist” statues in an article entitled “How to Topple a Statue Using Science.

“Should you happen to find yourself near a statue that you decide you no longer like, we asked scientists for the best, safest ways to bring it to the ground without anyone getting hurt—except, of course, for the inanimate racist who’s been dead for a century anyway,” wrote the article’s author James Stout.

Stout goes on to explain that “[t]he force required to pull down a statue isn’t as great as you think.” 

“To break the statue from its base, split into two teams on either side and work in a back-and-forth motion. Most statues are attached to the base by 2 to 3 feet of rebar, so you’ll actually be breaking it at the bronze above the rebar—not the rebar itself,” the article continues.

Stout also outlines what he calls “The Chemical Approach” to taking down offending statues.

“Maybe you’re operating with an even smaller team—or toppling the statue all by yourself. In that case, your best bet is melting the damn thing. So let’s make a thermite reaction,” he says.

Quoting Chris Harrison, a chemistry professor at San Diego State University, the article explains: “The formula is very simple. It’s 3:1 by mass of rust and aluminum powder. You mix those together and use a piece of magnesium to use as a high temperature fuse. And if you don’t have one, you could use a sparkler.”

Harrison goes on to give further instructions for melting the feet of statues. After explaining the likelihood of a chemical reaction causing a high-pitched squeal, he says, “One could imagine it sounding something like the sound a confederate general would make if their feet were on fire.”

The article, which has attracted a backlash from critics on social media, includes an image of a decapitated Christopher Columbus statue in Boston, a picture of protestors in England throwing a statue of Edward Colston into a river earlier this month, as well as a photo of U.S. troops toppling a statue of Saddam Hussein in Iraq in 2003.

Social commentator Christina Sommers accused the magazine of going “full Taliban” by publishing a guide on how to destroy statues. “I always thought @PopMech was about building things,” she wrote on Twitter.

Numerous statues around the United States have either been pulled down by protestors or officially removed in recent weeks following the death of George Floyd. In Virginia a legal battle is continuing after governor Ralph Northam ordered the removal of a historic statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee, but a court subsequently placed an injunction on the order. In California this past weekend protestors tore down and desecrated two statues of St. Junipero Serra, while another has been officially approved for removal. Yesterday New York City mayor Bill de Blasio announced that a statue of former U.S. president Theodore Roosevelt will be removed from the front of the American Natural History Museum in New York City. 

133 petitioners are also calling for St. Louis, Missouri, which is named after the Catholic St. Louis IX, to be renamed. They also want a statue of the monarch, who was canonized by Pope Boniface VIII in 1297, torn down because of the saint’s supposedly “Islamophobic” and anti-Semitic views. Earlier this month, leftists vandalized a statue of Gandhi in front of the Indian embassy in Washington, D.C. 


  george floyd, popular mechanics, statues

News

Liberal Catholics to LGBT activists in new video: ‘We’re transforming the Church from the bottom up’

Outreach 2020, an 'LGBTQ Catholic ministry gathering,' was canceled due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. Speakers put out this video instead.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 12:35 pm EST
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Jason Steidl, Ph.D., a 'gay Catholic.' Center on Religion and Culture / YouTube
Dorothy Cummings McLean Dorothy Cummings McLean Follow Dorothy
By Dorothy Cummings McLean

NEW YORK, June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) ― A group of Catholic activists have created a video of their personal speeches to Catholics who identify as LGBT to substitute for a canceled conference.

Outreach 2020 was supposed to be an “LGBTQ Catholic ministry gathering” taking place at New York’s Fordham University between June 18 and June 20 this year. It was canceled due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

Keynote speakers would have included Bishop John Stowe, OFM of Lexington, Kentucky; Sr. Jeannine Gramick, IBVM (formerly SSND), co-founder of New Ways Ministry; Father Bryan Massingale, a professor of ethics at Fordham University; Siva Subburaman, the director of the Georgetown LGBTQ Resource Center; and Timothy Radcliffe, O.P., former master general of the Dominican Order.

“With all these amazing speakers, we wanted to do something special for this month when the conference would have happened — and for Pride Month — to help encourage our LGBTQ Catholic friends,” said Fr. James Martin, S.J. in a short trailer he posted to Twitter last night. 

“I’m happy to present a new video which features Catholic leaders speaking to LGBTQ Catholics and those who minister with them.”

In his announcement, Martin emphasized the authority of those who supported Outreach 2020 ― “Cardinal Dolan, the local Jesuit provincial, and the president of Fordham University”  ― and listed the speakers in a hierarchy that placed “parents” after “activists.”

“We have an archbishop, a bishop, priests, women and men in religious orders, theologians, scholars, activists, parents, teachers, and students from a wide variety of backgrounds, and they all have something important to say to you.”  

In his own message, Fr. Martin suggests that Jesus Christ takes sides, telling Catholics who identify as LGBTQ that “Jesus is on” ― not at ― “your side.”

The speakers in the video include Ish Ruiz, a religious studies teacher at a Catholic high school in San Francisco; Sr. Luisa Derouen, O.P., a transgenderism advocate; Dr. Jason Steidl, a theology professor and critic of the Courage ministry; Archbishop John C. Wester of Santa Fe; Shiva Subbaraman, the director of the Georgetown LGBTQ Resource Center; and Fr. John Cecero, S.J., provincial of the USA Jesuits Northeast Province.

They are followed by Megan Fox-Kelly, a chaplain at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass.; James Alison, an influential Girardian theologian; Bishop Stowe; Aaron Bianco, now a lecturer at the University of San Diego; Sr. Edith Prendergast, former director of the Los Angeles Religious Education Conference (L.A. REC); Fr. Greg Greiten, an openly gay pastor serving in Milwaukee; and Fr. Massingale.

Other speakers include Stanley Francis “JR” Zerkowski, executive director of “Fortunate Families”; Kathy Farrell,  the founder of “Fortunate and Faithful Families” in Atlanta; Pater Radcliffe; Fr. Eddie De Leon, CMF, chair of the Department of Spirituality and Pastoral Ministry at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago; Shelly Fitzgerald, the guidance counselor fired for contracting a same-sex “marriage”; Marianne Palacios, a high school religion teacher; Sr. Gramick; and Dr. Craig Ford, assistant professor of theology and religious studies at St. Norbert College, Wisconsin.

Archbishop Wester told the disappointed delegates that he believes that the parable of the Good Shepherd is “particularly fitting” to their ministry to LGBT Catholics.

“Jesus’ parable of the Good Shepherd makes it abundantly clear that God loves all of us and that each of us has value and dignity as a beloved and unrepeatable child of God,” he said.

Bishop Stowe said he admires the “journeys” of the Catholic “LGBT community.”

“I want you to know how much I admire your journey of faith and your journey to integrity and authenticity,” he said.

“I know that very often it is a struggle, and I admire your perseverance to remain faithful to your Catholic identity and to be faithful to who you are.”

Some of the speakers suggested that their cause is gaining ground among Catholic believers.

“We’re transforming the Church from the bottom up,” said Dr. Steidl.


  catholic, coronavirus, fordham university, homosexuality, james martin, lgbt tyranny, propaganda

News

Far-left protestors destroy statues of missionary saint in California

Police did nothing, and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has yet to issue a public statement.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 11:27 am EST
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Leftist protestors vandalized two statues of St. Junipero Serra in California Twitter / screenshots
Paul Smeaton Paul Smeaton Follow Paul
By Paul Smeaton

Urgent appeal to the bishops of the world: Feed your flock! Sign the petition here.

CALIFORNIA, June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Protestors have pulled down and desecrated statues of Catholic missionary St. Junipero Serra in both San Francisco and Los Angeles, with others calling for the removal of another of his statues outside of Ventura City Hall.

Serra, a Spanish Franciscan missionary to the United States, helped to found nine missions in California in the late eighteenth century. Pope Francis canonized him in 2015.

Last week the Los Angeles Times reported that Ventura Mayor Matt LaVere, along with representatives from the Barbareño/Venureño Band of Mission Indians and Father Tom Elewaut, a Catholic priest based at the San Buenaventura Mission in Ventura, had issued a joint statement saying they believe the time has come to remove the statue from outside Ventura City Hall and have it “moved to a more appropriate non-public location.”

In 2013, upon being assigned to that mission, Father Elewaut told parishioners who had been attending the Traditional Latin Mass there for 15 years that he would no longer allow that rite of the Mass and they would need to find another parish.

On Saturday in Olvera Street, Los Angeles, 100 people reportedly helped to topple a statue of Serra with ropes. In a video of the incident, one participant can be heard saying “this is for our ancestors” as the statue came crashing down.

“The demonstration was referred to as an ‘unmonumenting and cleansing of space’ done in partnership with the Tataviam and Tongva Tribal Nations, according to a statement from members of Los Angeles’s Native/Indigenous community,” Los Angeles Daily News reports

“The act was described as ‘a step forward in returning balance to these lands,’” the report continues.

“No police intervened as this was a ceremony,” Joel Garcia, a witness who helped author the statement on behalf of the Tataviam and Tongva Tribal Nations, told the local newspaper. 

“We had some elders share songs at the start and we collectively built an altar following the removal,” Garcia said.

And in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, activists pulled down another statue of Serra. A video of the incident shows those in attendance cheering as the statue is toppled. One person can be seen hitting the statue with their fists and another person hitting it with a skateboard once it has fallen to the ground.

In response to the toppling of Serra’s statue in San Francisco, Archbishop of San Francisco Salvatore Cordileone said in a statement that a “renewed national movement to heal memories and correct the injustices of racism and police brutality in our country has been hijacked by some into a movement of violence, looting and vandalism.”

“The memorialization of historic figures merits an honest and fair discussion as to how and to whom such honor should be given. But here, there was no such rational discussion; it was mob rule, a troubling phenomenon that seems to be repeating itself throughout the country,” Cordileone said.

Voices in favor of the destruction of Serra’s statue have accused him of having committed numerous crimes, including genocide and the enslavement and torture of indigenous peoples.

But Cordileone insisted that Serra was a champion and protector of indigenous people.

“St. Serra made heroic sacrifices to protect the indigenous people of California from their Spanish conquerors, especially the soldiers. Even with his infirmed leg which caused him such pain, he walked all the way to Mexico City to obtain special faculties of governance from the Viceroy of Spain in order to discipline the military who were abusing the Indians. And then he walked back to California,” Archbishop Cordileone said.

The Embassy of Spain in the U.S. issued a statement on Saturday expressing their deep regret for the destruction of Serra’s statue in San Francisco.

“We deeply regret the destruction of the statue of Saint Junípero Serra in San Francisco today and would like to offer a reminder of his great efforts in support of indigenous communities,” they stated. 

“It is also with great regret that we receive the news of the damages inflicted upon the bust of Miguel de Cervantes, who was himself held as a slave in Algiers for 5 years, and whose literature serves as a call for freedom and equality. Defending the Spanish legacy in the US is a priority of our foreign policy in this country, and we will continue to do so by intensifying our educational efforts in order for the reality of our shared history to be better known and understood,” the statement continued. 

“We are also expressing our deep concern regarding these attacks to federal, state, and local authorities, asking that the memory of our rich shared history be protected, always with the utmost respect for the debates currently taking place,” the embassy concluded.

As of press time, LifeSiteNews was unable to find a public statement from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) on the statues’ desecrations. 

St. Junipero Serra “was the embodiment of ‘a Church which goes forth,’ a Church which sets out to bring everywhere the reconciling tenderness of God,” Pope Francis said when he canonized him. The pontiff has also called the saint “one of the founding fathers of the United States, a saintly example of the Church’s universality[,] and special patron of the Hispanic people of the country.”


  black lives matters, california, catholic, junipero serra, pope francis, statues

Blogs

YouTube censors ex-transgender for medical information on gender dysphoria

'This is a childhood development disorder,' Walt Heyer said. YouTube considered these words 'hate speech.'
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 8:30 pm EST
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Walt Heyer. ILFamilyInstitute / YouTube
Doug Mainwaring Doug Mainwaring Follow Doug
By Doug Mainwaring

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — During a panel presentation titled “Summit on Protecting Children from Sexualization,” hosted by the Heritage Foundation, a man who formerly lived as a woman after undergoing medical treatments and surgery and who later experienced regret and returned to living as a man, dared to say children “are not born transgender.”

“This is a childhood development disorder,” he added — and for those last six words, YouTube has removed the entire three-hour video of the panel discussion, calling his words “hate speech.”

The Daily Signal, an online publication of the Heritage Foundation, declared that YouTube had weaponized “hate speech” policy to censor its video.

After an appeal of the decision to YouTube and Google — which owns YouTube — the Heritage video remained censored.

“We vehemently disagree with YouTube’s decision to suppress valid medical information,” wrote Rob Bluey, a Heritage vice president and executive editor for the Daily Signal. “Not only is this decision anti-science, but it’s also part of an alarming trend of YouTube removing or blocking content that it doesn’t like.”

In an email to The Federalist, YouTube asserted, “Our hate speech policy prohibits videos which assert that someone’s sexuality or gender identity is a disease or a mental illness. We quickly remove videos violating our policies when flagged by our users.”

“YouTube has decided, under the guise of ‘hate speech,’ to censor the viewpoint that it doesn’t like,” said Emily Kao, director of The Heritage Foundation’s DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society, who hosted the summit. “This won’t help children and families struggling with this disorder who want information from both sides of the debate.”

Walt Heyer

The man who spoke those six words that offended YouTube’s censors, Walt Heyer, is one of the most courageous men alive today.

Born in 1944, Walt was married with children and had a good paying job. After 15 years of marriage, his wife filed for divorce, and in 1983, Walt underwent surgery to make himself appear like a woman and lived for eight years as “Laura.”

He later experienced regret and “detransitioned,” reverting to being himself — Walt — once and for all. That was nearly 30 years ago.

Walt is perhaps the world’s most important voice speaking out against the dangers of transgenderism, cross-sex affirmation, and “sex reassignment” surgery, which he refers to as “the greatest medical fraud in history.”

In the fall of 2017, I was privileged to spend 10 days with Walt in Hong Kong, where we addressed a symposium at the University of Hong Kong concerning what is at stake regarding twin cultural threats of transgenderism and same-sex “marriage,” which were suddenly at the doorstep of the cosmopolitian — but still deeply rooted in tradition — city-state.

I witnessed something extraordinary during those 10 days: every time Walt pulled his smartphone out of his pocket, he had a new text, email, or voice message from someone, somewhere in the world who had had second thoughts about “transitioning” and was now desperately searching for help to undo the harm he had done to body and psyche.

Some had just undergone a destructive medical procedure days before; others had done so years or decades ago.

These folks had to reach out to Walt because many Western countries have made it nearly impossible for those who experience regret after “transitioning” to find the help they seek.

Thanks to his website, SexChangeRegret.com, Walt is a lifeline for those who are desperate to find help to revert.

Walt Heyer stands by his statement

In a subsequent video filmed last week for the Heritage Foundation — which bleeps out those six words as if they were unutterable curse words — Walt explained, “YouTube will not allow you to hear six words uttered by me, a former transgender identifying person. I said that children suffering from gender dysphoria should not be encouraged to try experimental hormones and surgery.”

“And I stand by that statement,” he declared.

During the original panel discussion, Walt did not mince words, explaining to the audience that he was there “to put a human face on the destructive side of becoming a transgender.”

“Affirming children into cross-gender identity is child abuse. Let’s be honest,” he declared. “It’s not physical abuse, but it’s psychological abuse. It’s emotional abuse. And it’s sexual abuse. We cannot kid ourselves any longer.”

“I stand before you with a mutilated body, redeemed by Christ”

“We cannot ignore how devastating it is to young people to cross-dress them and affirm them,” he emphasized. “I’m here as a witness to this.”

I stand before you with a mutilated body, and a life that was destroyed in many ways — redeemed by Christ — but destroyed because I was affirmed.

I went to a gender therapist who said, “all you need to do is have hormones and reassignment surgery. That was in 1981. I underwent the surgery in 1983 because they said this is the treatment for gender confusion.

Wrong!

It’s destructive; it’s not treatment. It’s further abuse[.] ... Cutting off body parts, and filling someone with hormones is one of the most destructive things you can do.

And it’s not repairable. There are things that cannot be restored.

I’m here as a witness to tell you that we have to stop this nonsense.

Walt also warned that schools have become complicit in perpetrating the destruction of children’s lives in this way. “Schools have become the activist indoctrination location for children.”

“There is nothing more important[.] ... The stable foundation of a country is the family. [Transgenderism] is an issue that’s ripping families apart, and tearing lives apart,” he concluded.


  big tech, censorship, child abuse, free speech, google, transgenderism, walt heyer, youtube

Blogs

‘Walking Dead’ actor announces his 11-year-old daughter is now his transgender ‘son’

It is rapidly becoming normal for celebrity parents to announce that their children were born in the wrong bodies, and that as such, they are undergoing 'transition.'
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 3:37 pm EST
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'Walking Dead' actor Khary Payton Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images
Jonathon Van Maren Jonathon Van Maren Follow Jonathon
By Jonathon Van Maren

PETITION: Stop 'sex change' operations during coronavirus crisis! Sign the petition here.

June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Back in 2018, Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon happily announced the “transition” of her 21-year-old biological daughter, who became her transgender son. Then, megastar Charlize Theron made headlines for explaining that she was raising her son Jackson as a girl after he had declared he felt female. More recently, NBA All-Star Dwayne Wade told LGBT icon and TV host Ellen DeGeneres his 12-year-old son Zion was now a girl named Zaya. His wife, Hollywood actress Gabrielle Union, was as enthusiastic as he was. Trans is trendy. As usual, Hollywood is on the cutting edge. 

And now it is Walking Dead actor Khary Payton, who apparently plays King Ezekiel in the wildly popular AMC TV show (I haven’t seen it and find zombie entertainment dark and ghoulish). Earlier this month, he announced on social media that his 11-year-old biological daughter is now his transgender son. “This is my kid,” Payton wrote, posting a photo of the smiling child. “One of the most happy, well-adjusted individuals I’ve ever known. My son, Karter. Karter with a K because it reminded him of my name. He chose it. You see, he was born female but has always identified as a boy.”

To that, of course, we are all supposed to say “ahh” in a very understanding and approving way, because this is the way things are in 2020. It is rapidly becoming normal for celebrity parents to announce that their children were born in the wrong bodies, and that as such, they are undergoing “transition.” This “transition,” mind you, is simply to bring their bodies in line with how they currently feel, which is what counts. First in terms of hairstyle, clothing, and names, and later with the more sinister puberty blockers, hormone treatments, and “bottom surgery,” which refers to the mutilation and removal of the genitals.

Payton nodded to the fact that some might be uncomfortable with all of this, noting that he was making the announcement because his 11-year-old “thought it would be cool” (without saying whether he, too, thought it might be “cool” to transform his child into an LGBT icon overnight). The 48-year-old actor noted that despite warning his child of the existence of “a lot of jerks who would be harsh,” Karter informed him that “I can handle the trolls.” 

“Man, there is nothing more beautiful than watching your child feel the joy of exploring what it means to be true to themselves,” Payton continued. “This is his journey, and I am here for it. I hope you all have the opportunity to feel the unquenchable love that I am feeling right now.” 

The reaction from other celebrities, of course, was predictably affirming. Mark Hamill of Star Wars offered his congratulations, and Reno Wilson of the CBS sitcom Mike and Molly responded with the confusing comment “These kids are truly amazing!! Teaching us how to be human on the regular! Let’s go Karter!” He did not explain what was “regular” about a biological girl identifying as a boy, or why gender confusion—regardless of your views on transgender ideology—is anything to celebrate.

As I’ve noted many times, an entire generation of children has become the social guinea pigs in a vast, untested experiment with catastrophic consequences. It isn’t just social conservatives like myself pointing this out, either—the BBC released a bombshell report earlier this month detailing the many concerns of staff members at a prominent gender clinic. Many of them bluntly state that they are concerned that children are being mutilated and altered for a lifetime. Liberal J.K. Rowling also expressed her concerns recently that the number of girls choosing to identify as boys is skyrocketing. Unfortunately, media reports that contradict the narrative are ignored, and prominent figures such as Rowling are loudly denounced.

This is all very sad to watch. Because when the media circus disappears and the social media affirmation fades, thousands of children will be left with the torment of believing they are born in the wrong bodies, urged on by the media, celebrities, and much of the political class. They will drug themselves, mutilate themselves, and desperately seek ways to feel whole again. And one day—and I have had former transgender people describe this moment to me—many of them will be struck by the awful realization that they have been lied to. And if that moment comes, all those who celebrate them now will vanish without a trace and leave them to their pain.

Jonathon’s new podcast, The Van Maren Show, is dedicated to telling the stories of the pro-life and pro-family movement. In his latest episode, he interviews famed Chesterton scholar and founder of the Chesterton society and the Chesterton schools, Dale Ahlquist. They discusss what G.K. Chesterton would think of the riots happening in the United States and the current state of the world.

You can subscribe here and listen to the episode below:


  khary payton, transgenderism, walking dead

Blogs

French priest and liturgist: Abp. Viganò can help other prelates talk about ‘defective points of Vatican II’

There has been an ongoing discussion between Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò and Bishop Athanasius Schneider about the Second Vatican Council.
Mon Jun 22, 2020 - 3:15 pm EST
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Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò speaks at the Rome Life Forum in May 2018.
Maike Hickson Maike Hickson Follow Maike
By Maike Hickson

June 22, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Abbé Claude Barthe, a French diocesan priest who lives in Paris and who is a liturgy expert, author, and editor, has responded to the recent interventions of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò concerning the Second Vatican Council and its problems. In an intervention published by our Italian colleague Marco Tosatti (see full text below), the French priest says now that Viganò's example could encourage other prelates to come out into the public with their own disagreements with certain teachings of that Council.

After a thoughtful review of the Italian archbishop's arguments in this matter, Abbé Barthe states that “some prelates, above all after the last synodal assemblies, have been led to trace the consequences of the present situation back to their causes, which were established half a century ago. Your example and your encouragement can help them to express, in conscience, for the good of the Church, their disagreement with these causes: the defective points of Vatican II.”

As we had reported earlier, Archbishop Viganò had thanked Bishop Athanasius Schneider for his June 1 statement, according to which the controversial Abu Dhabi statement signed by Pope Francis – and which states that the “diversity of religions” is “willed by God” – has its roots in the Second Vatican Council's endorsement of a natural right to religious liberty and thus the concept of a natural right to believe in a false religion.

Schneider was responding to an analysis of this Abu Dhabi statement as presented by Cardinal Gerhard Müller. Some of his statements are presented here. The German cardinal had described a way of interpretation of this papal document that could be less controversial. Among other things, he had stressed the important duty of “any religious or civil authority” of accepting “the fundamental, supranational human right to religious freedom,” while at the same time insisting that this does not mean a relativism with regard to the revealed truth. For him, the controversial statement concerning the diversity of religions as willed by God “can” be read in a relativistic manner, but it “must not” be done this way. One should, he explained, “interpret” the text and its hermeneutic and terminology “with a view on the good intention of their authors rather than with a view on the academic precision in its expressions.”

In response, Bishop Schneider made two interventions, one on June 1, the other on June 8. It was the first intervention that prompted Archbishop Viganò to make his own statement regarding the Second Vatican Council. 

Schneider stated on June 1 that the Abu Dhabi document is wrong in declaring that God positively wills the diversity of religions. In that statement, Schneider discussed some problems regarding the Second Vatican Council's teaching on religious freedom which might need a future correction, just as  in the past, conciliar statements of previous centuries have been corrected.

“There is no divine positive will or natural right to the diversity of religions,” he then insisted. In his second article, the Kazakh prelate of German origin also disagreed with the claim that Catholics and Muslims believe in the same God, a claim which is an underlying assumption of the Abu Dhabi document. According to Bishop Schneider, Catholics and Muslims do not share a common faith in God, nor do they have a common adoration of God, especially since the Muslims reject the Incarnation and the Holy Trinity.

It was this explicit critique of a statement of the Second Vatican Council – the endorsement of religious liberty – that compelled Archbishop Viganò to publish a June 10 statement strongly criticizing the Second Vatican Council. 

“If we do not recognize,” he then wrote, “that the roots of these deviations are found in the principles laid down by the Council, it will be impossible to find a cure: if our diagnosis persists, against all the evidence, in excluding the initial pathology, we cannot prescribe a suitable therapy.” 

On June 15, the Italian prelate followed up on his first intervention, coming out even stronger by stating that those “heretical propositions or those which favor heresy” of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) “should be condemned, and we can only hope that this will happen as soon as possible.” He added that the Council should then be altogether “dropped” and “be forgotten.” 

He makes his own the following words of an Italian Law Professor, Paolo Pasqualucci: “If the Council has deviated from the Faith, the Pope has the power to invalidate it. Indeed, it is his duty.” 

It is here that Abbé Barthe's own intervention comes in. For this French priest, this last June 15 statement by Archbishop Viganò is of “great interest for the Church.” He then sums up the prelate's own analysis of the Vatican Council, which has to be done in light of what the “preceding doctrine” of the Church has been. Here, especially the conciliar texts Dignitatis Humanae (religious freedom) and Nostra Aetate (new relationship with non-Christian religions) come to mind. 

Abbé Barthe also discusses Archbishop Viganò’s statement that Vatican II, due to its deviations and ambiguities, should be annulled altogether. For this to be done, explains the priest, one needs to confirm Vatican II was pastoral, not doctrinal, in nature. Here, he is able to show that “the organs of the Council itself (Dz 4351) and all of its successive interpretations held that this Council was of a merely ‘pastoral’ nature, that is, not dogmatic.” 

For him, it would be a way out of our current crisis by insisting again on dogmatic teachings, away from the pastoral ones. He states: “In fact, the great way out of the present magisterial crisis is to come out of what is called the 'pastoral' and to enter once again into dogmatics: that the Pope alone or the pope and the bishops united to him express themselves magisterially and no longer ‘pastorally.’” The pastoral approach, as we might add, has shown to be much more prone to doctrinal heterodoxies, as Amoris Laetitia has shown us clearly. 

It is here that Abbé Barthe echoes Archbishop Viganò’s call for other prelates to join Bishop Schneider and him in an honest debate about the problems of Vatican II, for the sake of the Church and the salvation of souls. 

“A duty of conscience therefore weighs on the prelates of the Church who are aware of this situation,” the French priest writes, summing up Viganò and adding that his words could be an encouragement for others. As Viganò recently told Dr. Robert Moynihan, “I tried to go further down to understand why we have reached this situation...I am just trying to follow my conscience.” 

As Moynihan presented Viganò's position, he explained about the Second Vatican Council that “sometimes that interpretation was not keeping with the perennial tradition of the Church. In arguing this, Vigano is agreeing with the work of another bishop, Athanasius Schneider of Kazakhstan, who has been presenting this thesis on a number of occasions in recent years.”

And then comes the important statement from Archbishop Viganò: “Schneider was before me in realizing this. I have come to agree with him.” 

It is to be hoped that other prelates and priests will now join this debate, and we thank Abbé Barthe for his own intervention.

Please see here the full statement of Abbé Barthe. We thank Marco Tosatti for the permission to reprint.

Allow me to respond to Your Excellency’s “Excursus on Vatican II and Its Consequences” (Chiesa e post concilio, 9 June 2020), in order to emphasize, in all modesty, its great interest for the Church.

Permit me to summarize it in five points:

1) Vatican II contains texts “in clear opposition to the doctrine expressed in the Tradition.”

Your attack on Vatican II is aimed at the following:

– That which is in direct disagreement with preceding doctrine, such as the religious freedom of the declaration Dignitatis Humanae and the foundations of the new relationship with non-Christian religions of the declaration Nostra Aetate (we could also add the decree on ecumenism, Unitatis Redintegratio, n.3, which introduces the innovation of the idea of the “imperfect communion” that those separated from Christ and from Church are said to have with Christ and the Church,);

– The ambiguities that can be used in the sense of truth or error, such as the term “subsistit” in n. 8 of the Constitution Lumen Gentium: “The Church of Christ subsists in the Catholic Church” instead of “The Church of Christ is the Catholic Church.”

2) These doctrinal distortions are at the origin of the errors that followed them – the proof of the “spirit of the Council.”

You explain that the deviations or the most harmful elements for the faith of Christians that mark the post-conciliar period (you cite the Abu Dhabi Declaration, but also the Day in Assisi, the liturgical reform, the use of collegiality) have their origins in these distortions.

Further, from this text it clearly emerges that the concept of the “spirit of the Council” confirms the innovative specificity of this assembly, because “there was never talk of a “spirit of the Council of Nicea” or the “spirit of the Council of Ferrara-Florence,” even less the “spirit of the Council of Trent,” just as we never had a“post-conciliar” era after Lateran IV or Vatican I.”

3) These distortions cannot be corrected.

The efforts to correct the excesses of the Council, you say, are futile:

  1. One such option is to take the insufficient path of the “hermeneutic of continuity.” Much less is this possible since this hermeneutic is not a return to the preceding magisterium but represents the search for a third way between innovation and tradition. Benedict XVI, in his discourse to the Roman Curia of December 22, 2005, proposed a “hermeneutic of renewal in continuity” in opposition to the “hermeneutic of discontinuity and rupture”; but by this latter statement he focused both on “traditionalists” as well as “progressives,” who both hold that Vatican II made a certain rupture.
  2. Or, one calls upon the Magisterium to “correct” the errors of Vatican II. You rightly show that this project, “even with the best of intentions, threatens the foundation of the Catholic edifice.” In reality, opposing the magisterium of tomorrow against that of today, which in turn contradicts the magisterium of yesterday, would end up meaning that no magisterial act would ever be definitive.

Therefore, in a further statement made on June 15 (Chiesa e post concilio), you are of the opinion that a future pope “could annul the entire council.”

If I were to be allowed to amplify your analysis, I would say that the only solution for contradicting a preceding act with a magisterial act is to note that the act in question is not magisterial in its entirety. For example, Pastor Aeternus of Vatican I in 1870 annulled the decree Frequens of the Council of Constance in 1417, which purported to institutionalize the superiority of a Council over the pope. This annulment was possible because the Holy See had never recognized the dogmatic value of Frequens. In the same way, with Vatican II we find ourselves in the same situation as Frequens, because the organs of the Council itself (Dz 4351) and all of its successive interpretations held that this Council was of a merely “pastoral” nature, that is, not dogmatic. In fact, the great way out of the present magisterial crisis is to come out of what is called the “pastoral” and to enter once again into dogmatics: that the Pope alone or the pope and the bishops united to him express themselves magisterially and no longer “pastorally.”

4) – The present pontificate is clearly paradoxical.

You write: “What we have for years heard enunciated, vaguely and without clear connotations, from the highest Throne, we then find elaborated in a true and proper manifesto in the supporters of the present Pontificate.”

This is what many who have tried to give a pious interpretation to the controversial texts of Vatican II feel: they recognize that this is not possible because of the somewhat authentic application that is being done today. The texts of this pontificate are the culmination of the controversial points of the council, such as for example the erroneous recognition of the rights of conscience in the exhortation Amoris Laetitia, which in n. 301 affirms that in certain circumstances adultery is not a sin.

5) A duty of conscience therefore weighs on the prelates of the Church who are aware of this situation.

Speaking of yourself, you say: “Just as I honestly and serenely obeyed questionable orders sixty years ago, believing that they represented the loving voice of the Church, so today with equal serenity and honesty I recognize that I have been deceived. Being coherent today by persevering in error would represent a wretched choice and would make me an accomplice in this fraud.”

Some prelates, above all after the last synodal assemblies, have been led to trace the consequences of the present situation back to their causes, which were established half a century ago. Your example and your encouragement can help them to express, in conscience, for the good of the Church, their disagreement with these causes: the defective points of Vatican II.

Translated by Giuseppe Pellegrino @pellegrino2020

Abbé Barthe is the co-founder of the magazine Catholica; and he runs the newsletter Res novae, which is linked to the magazine L'Homme nouveau, which has an English edition.

He also authored different books, one of them having received a preface of Cardinal Robert Sarah, the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship. Here are some titles:

Trouvera-t-Il encore la foi sur la terre? Une crise de l’Eglise, histoire et questions, François-Xavier de Guibert, 2006, 3rd edition
Histoire du missel tridentin et de ses origines, 2016
La Messe de Vatican II. Dossier historique, Via Romana, 2018
La Messe, une forêt de symboles. Préface du Cardinal Sarah, Via Romana, dernière édition 2020


  abu dhabi document, athanasius schneider, carlo maria viganò, catholic, vatican ii

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