An Open Letter to Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Parish in Seattle

To Pastor Fr. Binh Ta, C.Ss.R. and Parochial Vicar Fr. Mark Scheffler, C.Ss.R. of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Parish, Seattle, WA

I was a visitor at Sacred Heart of Jesus this morning (Second Sunday of Easter), and I compliment you on a beautiful service and sanctuary. I found the first reading particularly inspiring because of discussions I’ve recently had with Catholic author Gil Bailie on his site, “The Cornerstone Forum.” Two things troubled me, however.When I sat down, I found a very disturbing tract in the hymnal rack in front of me. Titled “Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory,” it contains passages from the Diary of St. Maria Faustina Kowalska. Her descriptions of Purgatory and Hell are graphic and frightening. She writes, for example, “There are caverns and pits of torture where one form of agony differs from another. … Let the sinner know that he will be tortured throughout all eternity, in those senses which he made use of to sin.” Her purgatory is “a misty place full of fire in which there was a great crowd of suffering souls.” She is obviously describing a literal fire, because she refers to the flames that were burning them.

I looked around and saw young people. Any one of them could have picked up this tract and read it. My question is, “Do you really want young Catholics—or indeed any Catholics—to see this kind of material when they come to Mass?” And what about visitors to your church? Do you think they feel welcomed when the first piece of literature they pick up threatens eternal torment?

I was also distressed to see that your parish was distributing the Prop 74 petition. When you consider that around 53% of Catholics in this country support same-sex marriage, circulating such a petition in church seems unnecessarily divisive and demonstrates misplaced priorities. Parishioners should not have to listen to anti-equality messages when they attend Mass. Moreover, Archbishop Sartain’s letter supporting the Referendum reveals a very confused grasp of the social justice issues involved. He offers homosexual couples “respect” with one hand while denying them equality with the other. Gay and lesbian couples in this state do not want to hear nostrums about respect when they are treated like second-class citizens. True “respect” requires equal access to the benefits (including the very name) of civil marriage.

I know that many Catholics in the Seattle Diocese share my disappointment that Sacred Heart of Jesus did not join St. Mary’s Cathedral, St. James Cathedral, St. Joseph’s Church, St. Louise, Christ Our Hope Church, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and St. Patrick’s in declining to participate in this anti-equality effort.

What an irony that St. Maria Faustina Kowalska’s lurid descriptions of Purgatory and Hell were available in your pews on the same morning that you circulated a petition to deny loving same-sex couples the right to a civil marriage.

Sincerely yours,

Doughlas Remy

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5 Responses to “An Open Letter to Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Parish in Seattle”

  1. Monte Lauabcher Says:

    A Homily By Bishop Daniel Jenky: (Edited for Length)

    To read his entire homily visit here: The Catholic Post.com

    It Is Not Easy To Be A Christian

    There is only one basic reason why Christianity exists and that is the fact that Jesus Christ truly rose from the grave. Meeting the Risen Lord had changed everything about these first disciples, and knowing the Risen Lord should also change everything about us.
    You know, it has never been easy to be a Christian and it’s not supposed to be easy! The world, the flesh, and the devil will always love their own, and will always hate us. As Jesus once predicted, they hated me, they will certainly hate you.

    But our Faith, when it is fully lived, is a fighting faith and a fearless faith. Grounded in the power of the resurrection, there is nothing in this world, and nothing in hell, that can ultimately defeat God’s one, true, holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.

    The Church Has Survived Many Attacks By Her Enemies

    For 2,000 years the enemies of Christ have certainly tried their best. But think about it. The Church survived and even flourished during centuries of terrible persecution, during the days of the Roman Empire.

    The Church survived barbarian invasions. The Church survived wave after wave of Jihads. The Church survived the age of revolution. The Church survived Nazism and Communism.

    And in the power of the resurrection, the Church will survive the hatred of Hollywood, the malice of the media, and the mendacious wickedness of the abortion industry.

    The Church will survive the entrenched corruption and sheer incompetence of our Illinois state government, and even the calculated disdain of the President of the United States, his appointed bureaucrats in HHS, and of the current majority of the federal Senate.

    May God have mercy on the souls of those politicians who pretend to be Catholic in church, but in their public lives, rather like Judas Iscariot, betray Jesus Christ by how they vote and how they willingly cooperate with intrinsic evil.

    As Christians we must love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us, but as Christians we must also stand up for what we believe and always be ready to fight for the Faith. The days in which we live now require heroic Catholicism, not casual Catholicism. We can no longer be Catholics by accident, but instead be Catholics by conviction.

    In our own families, in our parishes, where we live and where we work – like that very first apostolic generation – we must be bold witnesses to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. We must be a fearless army of Catholic men, ready to give everything we have for the Lord, who gave everything for our salvation.

    Remember that in past history other governments have tried to force Christians to huddle and hide only within the confines of their churches like the first disciples locked up in the Upper Room.

    In the late 19th century, Bismarck waged his “Kulturkampf,” a Culture War, against the Roman Catholic Church, closing down every Catholic school and hospital, convent and monastery in Imperial Germany.

    Clemenceau, nicknamed “the priest eater,” tried the same thing in France in the first decade of the 20th Century.

    Hitler and Stalin, at their better moments, would just barely tolerate some churches remaining open, but would not tolerate any competition with the state in education, social services, and health care.

    This Administration Is Going The Way Of Hitler And Stalin

    In clear violation of our First Amendment rights, Barack Obama – with his radical, pro abortion and extreme secularist agenda, now seems intent on following a similar path.

    Now things have come to such a pass in America that this is a battle that we could lose, but before the awesome judgement seat of Almighty God this is not a war where any believing Catholic may remain neutral.

    This fall, every practicing Catholic must vote, and must vote their Catholic consciences, or by the following fall our Catholic schools, our Catholic hospitals, our Catholic Newman Centers, all our public ministries — only excepting our church buildings – could easily be shut down. Because no Catholic institution, under any circumstance, can ever cooperate with the instrinsic evil of killing innocent human life in the womb.

    No Catholic ministry – and yes, Mr. President, for Catholics our schools and hospitals are ministries – can remain faithful to the Lordship of the Risen Christ and to his glorious Gospel of Life if they are forced to pay for abortions.

    Now remember what was the life-changing experience that utterly transformed those fearful and quaking disciples into fearless, heroic apostles. They encountered the Risen Christ. They reverenced his sacred wounds. They ate and drank with him.

    We Have Nothing To Fear

    We have nothing to fear, but we have a world to win for him. We have nothing to fear, for we have an eternal destiny in heaven. We have nothing to fear, though the earth may quake, kingdoms may rise and fall, demons may rage, but St. Michael the Archangel, and all the hosts of heaven, fight on our behalf.

    No matter what happens in this passing moment, at the end of time and history, our God is God and Jesus is Lord, forever and ever.

    Christus vincit! Christus regnat! Christus imperat!

    Christ wins! Christ reigns! Christ commands!

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  3. peter1589 Says:

    Your query, “And what about visitors to your church? Do you think they feel welcomed when the first piece of literature they pick up threatens eternal torment?”

    Look at it this way. Do you think souls who end up in Hell as a result of not taking to heart the warnings of Jesus and saints, such as Faustina Kowalska, Josepha Menendez, St. Teresa of Avila, St. Don Bosco or myriad others, in addition to the dire warnings of the Blessed Mother at Fatima when she revealed the millions of souls burning in Hell to the 3 shepherd children, will regret not having followed the clear Catholic doctrine in the text you found in the pew?

    Taken another way, God inflicted upon me the unspeakable terror of introducing me to my demon when I converted to Catholicism, in addition to blessing me with a wholesale change of fortune, so as to warn me not to get complacent. The event happened in NYC while I was in bed praying the Rosary, a devotion which the Blessed Virgin promises 15 benefits, the first of which is, “Whosoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary shall receive signal graces.” A signal grace indeed! A voice was injected into my left ear stating, “I WILL KILL YOU ALL!!” in a reptilian, simultaneously thermonuclear hot and liquid nitrogen cold, furiously murderous, utterly devoid of anything other than murder, hissing spiritual lava. I arced ballistically out of bed landing on my knees at the end of the bed, praying God over and over never to permit me to end up with that monster, shaking like a leaf and sweating like a soaked sponge.

    Another time, in the very church you visited, I was laying prostrate before the Blessed Sacrament asking Jesus Truly Present to give me an understanding of the state of my soul. He proceeded to permit the demon to crush my left shoulder into the floor in such force I thought it would break.

    Have I learned from these explicit instructions? Hardly. And if no one learns from the text of St. Faustina Kowalska and, as you demonstrate, wishes only to dismiss this SAINT’S warnings as inappropriate and inconvenient, imagine yourself dealing futilely with a 12 foot reptilian monster or two, complete with razor fins, claws and teeth, seething with murderous fury … for eternity.

    Stop complaining about the Church’s saints, or about the strange blessing God gave you by putting you in a circumstance where you had access to this explicit Church teaching, in a Catholic church where I have heard only once in 20 years’ attendance any mention of Hell, and then in only the most insipid terms. To their infinite credit, I have heard NO mention in any other Catholic Church in a homily about the topic of Hell. And this is for 25 years in churches around the nation.

    I assure you that Sacred Heart clergy did not place that pamphlet in the pew, but perhaps a devout member of the congregation … or an equally dismissive nominal Catholic as yourself tired of the “nonsense” about Hell … left it there for God to test your resolve? After all, nothing escapes God’s notice and I assure you He is present Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity right there in the Blessed Sacrament of that and every Catholic Church, no matter that 53% of the “Catholics” in this country divisively support homosexual “marriage” no matter its barren consequences, it’s convenience to commit sin upon sin upon sin upon sin daily by thought, word, deed and omission in these satanically supersaturated days, or its explicit condemnation by God in the example of Sodom and Gomorrah, or Jesus’s complete silence in the presence of the homosexual Herod.

    Are we in the Catholic Church due to the earthly power of Gallup polls, or because Truth is Truth and His Name is Christ Jesus?

    Do we depend upon the character, personality and charisma of some sweet tongued preacher as the PROTEST-ants do? Or are we cognizant of being in the presence of the Creator of the universe encased directly in front of us in the Blessed Sacrament as He is in every Catholic Church around the world, promising to be with us till the end of time?

    Lastly, there was a particularly gifted priest by the name of Fr. Stefan Gobbi who came to Seattle back in the 1980’s and who was blessed by locutions of the Blessed Virgin Mary as the head of the Marian Movement of Priests. While in St. James, during the leadership of Archbishop Hunthausen, She spoke to Fr. Gobbi and said:

    “Jesus is today again despised, scourged and wounded in his Mystical Body. How the permissive attitude of many priests and of some bishops who justify even the gravest acts of impurity makes his divine Heart suffer!

    Precisely here, in this very place, the Heart of Jesus has been despised, wounded and outraged by the welcoming of so many of my poor children, consumed by this terrible vice and by the public encouragement given to them to continue along the road of impure sin against nature. Impure acts against nature are sins which cry for vengeance in the sight of God. These sins draw down upon you and upon your nations the flames of the justice of God.

    The time has come to proclaim to all, with clarity and with courage, the sixth commandment given by God to Moses: “Do not commit impure acts,” (cf. Ex. 20:14) still has its full force and must be observed even by this corrupted and perverted generation.

    Every pastor who, in any manner whatsoever, would justify these sins, draws down upon his person and upon his life the fierce fire of divine justice. The cup of iniquity is now full, is more than full and is flowing over everywhere.

    And so I invite you to multiply your cenacles of prayer and to offer me your lives, made fragrant by the virtue of purity, as a powerful force of supplication and of reparation.

    I promise you that even now the heavens are on the point of opening upon this poor corrupt world, to cause the fiery dew of divine justice and of mercy to descend so that it may again become a new garden of light, of purity and of holiness.”

    What is happening to this bastion of liberal thought precedes a massive catastrophe similar to Sodom and Gomorrah. I understand gays feel powerless to go contrary to their innate state, but to literally define one’s existence on a sexual basis conveys an all-consuming addiction, similar to what is felt when drowning. It requires an heroic response and a massive self-denial which this generation, so accustomed to luxurious sensual pursuits, finds reprehensible. But what if something infinitely worse awaits us in the afterlife? I assure you, it does.

    Do penance, or we are toast.

    Did not St. Paul state in his letter to the Corinthians:

    6:8. But you do wrong and defraud: and that to your brethren.

    6:9. Know you not that the unjust shall not possess the kingdom of God? Do not err: Neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers:

    6:10. Nor the effeminate nor liers with mankind … shall possess the kingdom of God.

    Does not the Church state in its list of the 4 sins crying to God for vengeance, no. 2 being the sin of Sodom?

    And here you are criticizing Archbishop Sartain for being confused about social issues. Is he a politician who finds it opportune to please all his constituents as far as possible? Or is he an Archbishop of the One, Holy, Apostolic Roman Catholic Church? Can you kill Church teaching? Can you find eternal bliss by impugning the Known Truth?

    The Church condemns homosexual practices. The Bible condemns homosexual practices. The Blessed Mother condemns homosexual practices. Homosexual practices themselves have produced a holocaust of death by a variety of sexually transmitted diseases. And if none of these facts is sufficient to divert you from embracing anti-Church sentiments over pro-Church teaching, what hope do you have for salvation?

  4. Dallas Smith Says:

    Catholicism…you my friend, are doing it wrong. It is not about good feelings. It is not about popular opinion. It is about the question of eternity. At its core the One True Faith is about nothing less. True freedom is found in fighting off sin and striving to follow a path that, while it won’t win many opinion polls, will ultimately result in spending eternity with our Creator. Modernism and worldliness are antithetical to the Church. I have often meditated on the fact that the Catholic Church is not about us, about how it makes us feel or what we purport to ‘get out of it.’ It is about worshipping the one true God through the pinnacle of prayer, the Holy Mass. By worshipping, respecting and yes fearing and trembling before the one true God who is truly present, body, blood, soul and divinity, in the Eucharist we receive a multitude of grace and benefits that we could never create on our own. I pray that as you continue writing on the Catholic Faith its truths are more fully revealed to you. God bless you and God love you.

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