Sunday, November 13, 2016

The Gospel According to Satan

I have wasted a good portion of my life in a futile search for someone and/or something on this earth that I could truly believe in, someone and/or something that was real and true and honest. And I have found nothing but disappointment and broken dreams in my journey.

I tried religion - specifically a small cult that believed itself to be the one and only true church of God founded by Jesus Christ Himself. It was an odd mixture of Christian beliefs - some false, some true - and Judaism. This cult had a very "us against them" outlook, viewing everyone outside of the Church as unbelievers headed for damnation. There were many good people in that cult, people who truly believed and tried to live their lives in obedience to God as they understood Him. But it was the same sad story of church leaders who were actually immoral, dishonest and greedy people who didn't give a damn about those who were supporting them and their lavish lifestyles. The cult basically fell apart when the founder died.

I have tried both ends of the political spectrum, from liberalism to extreme right wing. I was liberal in my 20's and 30's, but found right-wing conservatism in my 40's, becoming a devoted listener of right wing talk radio and Fox News. My conservative heroes were such people as Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly. Like the religious cult I had belonged to, these conservative heroes have a very us-versus-them mentality as well, and I based my political views on their distorted messages, believing that my enemies were all the people who disagreed with me.

As far as my religious beliefs, I floundered for a few years after the cult in which I was involved fell apart, not sure where I belonged. Then I came full circle, back to the Catholic Church into which I had been baptized at two weeks of age. However, I felt somewhat disoriented when I returned to the Catholic Church. I had left the Church in 1969, which was after Vatican II but before many of the post-Vatican II changes had been implemented, including the change to the Mass. It seemed very different from the Church I had known as a child, and I didn't quite know what to make of it.

But along came those who *rescued* me from my confusion - the traditionalists. They told me that the Church had gone off track, that most people - both lay and cleric - who called themselves "Catholic" were, in actual fact, CINO's - Catholic In Name Only. The trads taught me that nothing good came after Vatican II either in the Church or the world. The trads showed me that true Catholicism could only be found in traditionalism, specifically the Traditional Latin Mass and everything connected with it. The traditionalists were very sincere, devout people who not only knew their stuff, but they lived it. And certainly the TLM, with its use of Latin, smells and bells and Gregorian Chant, was a far better way of worshiping God than the Protestant Novus Ordo Mass.

I was somewhat taken aback by the judgmental and dismissive attitude of the trads towards anyone who didn't believe as they did, and their almost complete rejection of everything post-Vatican II. But c'mon, they were right! There was nothing wrong in their harsh and condemning comments about the Church because they knew what they were talking about, just like my political right wing heroes. I soon bought into the traditionalist mentality and became just as judgmental and condemning in my own thinking.

Once again I was part of a group which divided the world into "us and them". Traditionalism was on the right side, and anyone who could not see that was either stupid or evil or both. My heroes were people like Michael Voris, Father John Zuhlsdorf. Michael Matt and Chris Ferrara. These were God fearing people who would never let me down. These people, in my mind, were those who could be trusted to speak truth to power.

Then I started listening to Pope Benedict XVI, who said that Vatican II was a good and holy council desperately needed by the 20th and 21st Century Church. That is when I began my slow break from Traditionalism. That is when I stopped listening to people and started listening to God.

I started attending the dreaded "Novus Ordo", and found that there were good people at the Mass who loved God as much as any traditionalist did. I found good priests. I found people who understood that while the rules upon which the Traditionalists place so much emphasis are important, love and mercy are the foundation of following Jesus Christ. I found people at the "Novus Ordo" who, unlike many of my traditionalist friends, believed Christ when He said He came not to judge the world but to save it (John 12:47).

Certainly the Catholics outside of the traditionalists were not perfect. They have no hesitation in stating their disagreements with Church authority, and that did and does greatly concern me. But one very different quality is that there is no "us versus them" mentality. For the most part, they do not believe they are superior to others, they don't look at those who disagree with them as their enemies. They are accepting and loving of all people, just as Jesus Christ was in His ministry. It is actually this attitude that infuriates traditionalists above almost everything else.

When I first started attending the "Novus Ordo" Mass on a more regular basis and then tried to share this with my fellow traditionalists, I was met with a stonewall of disapproval. How could I even think of trying to defend the post-Vatican II Church! What good could I possibly find in the "Novus Ordo" Mass? What was I thinking when I defended people like the heretic clown, Cardinal Timothy Dolan?

I have shared my spiritual journey on this blog over the last five years. When I first began this blog, I was a radical traditionalist, completely immersed in the thinking that traditionalism, and specifically the Traditional Latin Mass, was the salvation of both the world and the Church. As I have changed my views, I have been attacked - sometimes quite viciously - by the traditional right wing in the Church, including those who at one time called me their friend. Pewsitter and other traditional sites have linked to my blog several times as an example of godless liberalism. I am on the enemies list of at least two of my former heroes - Father John Zuhlsdorf and Michael Voris.

The conclusion I have come to is that the enemy of the Gospel of Mercy and Love that Jesus Christ brought to the world is the "us versus them" mentality. Whenever we start seeing ourselves as right and the rest of the world as wrong and evil, we are separating ourselves from Jesus Christ.

That is not to say that there is no difference between the true Christians and the rest of the world. Christian beliefs and actions completely separate us from the world. But the fact remains that we are sinners deserving of hell just as much as anyone else, and it is only the Grace of Jesus Christ that saves us. We are like alcoholics who have stopped drinking, or drug addicts living clean lives. We no longer engage in destructive behavior, but it is always there tempting us, and the only way we can truly avoid sin is through the strength we receive from the Holy Spirit. It is never anything for which we can personally take credit.

I realize now that anyone who preaches or promotes an "us versus them" message in any way is not of God, but of the devil, causing division and hatred between people. Look at our world now, and look at the United States, especially the past presidential election. Both the Republicans, led by Donald Trump, and the Democrats, led by Hillary Clinton, ran on a platform of "I'm right and good and my opponent and anyone who supports him or her is evil." God was as far from this presidential campaign - on both the Republican and Democratic side - as He could be.

Remember Hillary's comment about those supporting Trump being a "basket of deplorables"? Donald Trump's campaign was nothing but attacks against anyone who dared to disagree with him - he even attacked the father of a fallen soldier, and a former Miss Universe. He campaigned on a promise to block all Muslims from entering the country, a totally anti-American position. His bigoted racist comments don't seem to bother the Catholics supporting him in the least. His followers included racists such as the Ku Klux Klan. His campaign rallies were marked by violence and racial animosity.

Protesters attack a man they mistakenly identified as a supporter of
Donald Trump outside a Trump campaign rally in San Jose, Calif.
As a follower of Jesus Christ, it was obvious to me that I could not support either candidate.  They were both equally bad for our country and the entire world.  

So why are there so many Catholics who supported Donald Trump?  For one major reason - Trump said he is now pro life, despite making statements such as can be seen in the video below from 1999, in which he says is he "pro choice in every respect":

Catholics and other Christians supporting Trump say that he has now changed his position on abortion, and they don't see any reason why they can't trust him.  It doesn't bother them at all that he has been married three times, divorcing his wives for no other reason than he grew tired of them.  Catholics just ignore the fact that Donald Trump is a life long womanizer and a professed sexual predator.  Trump has lived his seven decades on earth in pursuit of wealth and fame, and has never thought of anyone but himself.  He is a tax cheat.  He has failed miserably at business, hurting and even destroying many other people along the way.  Yet, all his Catholics supporters can say is "he is pro choice and we actually have a chance of overturning Roe v. Wade."

Are you kidding me?  Roe v. Wade was passed almost 44 years ago.  The Republicans have had control of the government many times over these decades, and we have had conservative majorities on the Supreme Court.  Yet, any pro life bill introduced in Congress was shelved. All Supreme Court decisions were in favor of keeping abortion legal.  Anyone who thinks that the Republicans or the Supreme Court actually want to overturn Roe v Wade is living in a dream world.  Abortion is a billion dollar business.  It ain't ever going away in this world.

Don't get me wrong.  I have no use for Hillary Clinton, either.  She is a power hungry pawn of the elite establishment, and no one is more pro abortion than she is.  I cannot support her either.

But Hillary Clinton is no longer relevant, because we now have Donald Trump as our new president, set to be sworn in early next year.  And far, far too many who call themselves Christian have aligned themselves with this man whose entire message can be summed up as "us versus them, and we are going to destroy them."

There is nothing good looming over the horizon for either America or the rest of the world.  The entire world is divided along the lines of "us versus them", which can quite rightly be called the Gospel of Satan.  Jesus told us to LOVE our enemies, DO GOOD to those who persecute you."  (Mt. 5:44).  This is not the way of Donald Trump.

We have now elected a man who has promised to "bomb the shit" out of our enemies, causing more war and more death and destruction our world.  He has told us he loves war, and has vowed to use torture on our enemies.  This kind of thinking and action are what caused the creation of ISIS, and it will only get worse.

I find it fascinating that this year was declared the Jubilee Year of Mercy by the Holy Father.  That year ends December 8, 2016.

What happens then?  From St. Faustina's diary:
Speak to the world about My mercy; let all mankind recognize My unfathomable mercy. It is a sign for the end times; AFTER IT WILL COME THE DAY OF JUSTICE.Jesus to St. Faustina, Divine Mercy in My Soul, Diary, n. 848
The world has been showered with God's Mercy. We have steadfastly refused to accept that mercy. We have persisted in an "us versus them" mentality, judging and condemning everyone who does not believe as we do. And now the United States has elected the leader of the free world who does not even have the word "mercy" in his vocabulary. He has already started an enemies list, as one of his aides has explained:
Donald Trump surrogate Omarosa Manigault said the President-elect's campaign is keeping a list of people who did not support his run to the White House.
"Let me just tell you, Mr. Trump has a long memory and we're keeping a list," Manigault, the campaign's director of African-American outreach, told the Independent Journal Review, an online news outlet started by two former GOP staffers aimed at a center-right audience.
Anyone who preaches a message of "us versus them" and is constantly pointing to those on the "other side" as evil and dangerous is someone who should be avoided.  The "us versus them" message was the message of the small cult of my youth, it is the message of extreme right and left wing politics, it is the message of Catholic traditionalists of whom I was a part, and it is the message of  United States President Elect Donald Trump and all who support him.

It is so hard to believe that Donald Trump will be occupying the same office as Abraham Lincoln.

God have mercy on us all.


  1. Hello CIB

    Thank Christ you stand against these evil doers who are Radical Traditionalists! I am so sick and tired of these people ruining the Latin Mass movement, they are even poisoning the youth mentally and spiritually!!!

    Anyways CIB, do you think that Pope Francis would be on that list? He certainly didn't side with pro abort Hilary, but because of the not Christian comment on Trump's behavior, you think Francis earned a place on that list?

    1. Take a look at almost any traditionalist blog. They point to Pope Francis almost as Satan himself. They feel his message of love, mercy and inclusiveness is the message of Satan. There is no doubt in my mind that the traditionalists would reject Jesus Christ Himself if He walked the earth today. They do not realize it, but they have in actuality rejected Christ when they reject the Holy Father.

    2. Thanks for the first reply. What about my hit list question?

    3. I'm not sure what you mean. What kind of "hit list" are you talking about?

    4. CiB,Thank you for sharing part of your spiritual journey. It's certainly one with which I can identify to some extent.

      This US presidential election must be making Satan smile at the discord and downright hatred that continue to be shown.

      I believe that Julian Barkin's question was about whether or not you think Pope Francis is on Trump's hit-list.

    5. Ah - yes. The fact that the Pope dared to say something in disagreement with Trump most likely did put him on an "enemies" list. But I think that if and when Trump meets him, he will treat the Pope with the greatest respect. It seems Trump knows how to play the game when he has to.

  2. I hope you won't get too mad at me for saying this, but I voted for Donald Trump. Yes, the man has quite often come across as a jerk, and even E. Michael Jones considers Trump to be a narcissist. To me, however, Trump represented the lesser of two evils. After all, isn't Hillary Clinton AWESOMELY pro-abortion?

    I will also admit that I recently purchased the hardcover edition of Michael Voris's book "Militant: Resurrecting Authentic Catholicism." However, I didn't purchase it via the Church Militant web site. I bought it from Goodwill via Amazon. Like I said before, I would REALLY like a faithful, orthodox Catholic to SERIOUSLY critique the book.

    BTW, is it safe to say that Father Charles Coughlin was a danger to the Catholic faithful?

    1. In my view, both Trump and Clinton were equally bad. I could not vote at all this year. It was like choosing between Satan and Lucifer. But we all do what we have to do.

      Did you like Voris's book? What is your critique of it?

      I know very little about Father Coughlin, but it does seem that he preached a very divisive message, condemning all the rest of the world.

  3. I would just ask you to please not be scandalized. Many who call themselves Christians are hypocrites. Always has been, always will be, till the end. Look how the secular princes persecuted Jews in the name of religion, or how Europeans took over the Americas and Australia, twisting religion to justify theft and murder. There are always people doing Satanic things in the name of Jesus. But see, it is a giant tu quoque to insist like most people do that Christianity is false. There are also true disciples with faith AND charity. Many people confuse religiousity for holiness and use religion to justify their status. Perhaps this is why Jesus says "Many are called but few are chosen." Many Christians will weep during Matthew 25 because they only had the faith and lived worse than many unbelievers.

    1. I lived a good portion of my life thinking that I was absolutely right only to find out that I was wrong about almost everything. We human beings, because of our fallen nature, have an amazing ability to deceive ourselves. The vast majority of people who voted for Trump truly believed they are on the right side.

      I will write about that in my next post.

  4. I have so infrequently read someone who recognizes Donald Trump for exactly what he is - thank you!!! A friend of mine back home in NJ and I have come up w/ the theory that - living there all these years - we know Trump much more than the rest of the country does - then again, there is the friend of mine who said "he IS a family man because my father was married and divorced three times and he was a good Christian!" ;-


    1. And P.S. YES! TY! I was getting really tired of being bashed for not voting at all. Felt exactly the way you did!

  5. When you get a chance, Catholic in Brooklyn, check out the following link:

    Happy New Year!

  6. So sad that you're filled with pessimism about the future of this country and the world based on your assessment that Donald Trump's entire message can be summed up as "us versus them, and we are going to destroy them." You give much power to an individual man and seem to lack faith that God can and often does bring about good from what we initially view as hopeless situations. Pray and trust God.

    You say, "The "us versus them" message was the message of the small cult of my youth, it is the message of extreme right and left wing politics, it is the message of Catholic traditionalists of whom I was a part, and it is the message of United States President Elect Donald Trump and all who support him."

    Are you not also engaging in an "us vs them" mentality by imprudently putting everyone who supports Trump in a box and proclaiming that they "all" support an 'us vs them' mentality? Even Clinton restrained herself, calling only half of Trump's supporters deplorable. People voted for Trump for many reasons. Many voted for either candidate with great reluctance. To view them all as holding an "us vs them" mentality or as wholly espousing the views of the candidates is erroneous.

    Be careful, it's true that Satan has been successful at fueling division among many, but your words toward those who supported Trump or Clinton in the election appear condescending and divisive.

    You say, "As a follower of Jesus Christ, it was obvious to me that I could not support either candidate." The implication you make is that those who voted for either candidate cannot be followers of Christ.

    You say, "Whenever we start seeing ourselves as right and the rest of the world as wrong and evil, we are separating ourselves from Jesus Christ." Do you not separate yourself from Christ by viewing all who voted for Clinton or Trump,all who support Trump, liberal and right wing political pundits, the 'trads' and the cult members you knew in a very negative light and as people who are not of God but of the devil?

    All of these people were created by and are loved dearly by God. We're to love them no matter how difficult it is and pray that they'll be drawn closer to Christ. That is how the tactic of the devil, division, will be overcome.

    1. If we are all to follow your reasoning, then no one can ever have an opinion on anything. Certainly, according to your arguments, Jesus Christ Himself was wrong when He condemned the religious of His day.

      What I am rejecting is the hate that separates people. It is the thinking that whatever I say and do is right, and if anyone disagrees with me, then he is wrong and worthy of condemnation. By doing this, we leave no room for anyone to think differently, to see things from another point of view, to have their own ideas and thoughts.

      Donald Trump constantly berates anyone who disagrees with him. He did it again today when he called out Meryl Streep - one of our greatest actresses ever - as "highly over rated." Trump cannot take criticism of any kind, and he feels absolutely compelled to denounce anyone who disagrees with him. That is the kind of thinking that can eventually lead to war between nations if taken far enough. It is very scary when the leader of the free world thinks this way.

      In this post, I have given my experiences of being involved in various different groups which thrived on their feelings of superiority over others. That is the great danger.

  7. Laura Ingraham is a gal pal of Raymond Arroyo's. BTW, Catholic in Brooklyn, what is YOUR take on the Bill Cosby situation?

    1. Laura Ingraham was also an advisor in the Trump campaign and was considered for the position of Trump's press secretary. Needless to say, I don't have a lot of respect for her. And I certainly do not have a lot of respect for Raymond Arroyo.

      I think Bill Cosby is a tragic figure who shows just how dark human nature can be. Like everyone else, I was shocked when it all came out, and did not want to believe it. But he has actually admitted to it, so there really is no question as to his guilt.

    2. When you get a chance, Catholic in Brooklyn, check out the following URL:

    3. Catholic in Brooklyn, I imagine you are aware of the verdict in the Bill Cosby case. When you get a chance, check out the following URL:


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