Monday, January 27, 2020


Last year, a psychotherapist who I knew through a friend, called me and asked for legal advice. He told me that he had participated in a study of the "God Effect," and wanted to bring it into the mainstream. The study was a small scale version of the following test, which was reported by Religious News Service (RNS) in 2016.

Cancer patient Tony D. Head wasn’t sure he’d call it "God" exactly, but some extraordinary power touched him during his psychedelic-assisted therapy session.

“It was so powerful and so profound that it just took my breath away,” said Head, a a research subject in a new study of psychotherapy fueled by psilocybin, the active ingredient in the mind-altering drug known as magic mushrooms.

“Whatever it was, it was a power that is in the universe," he added after the session at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. "I feel like it changed my life.”

Head, an actor who played Major Bobby Reed in the popular HBO series "The Wire," was one of 80 cancer patients who volunteered to participate in two studies. The findings were published Thursday (Dec. 1, 2016) by researchers at Johns Hopkins and the New York University School of Medicine.

The separate but similar clinical trials were designed to see if a single dose of psilocybin could reduce psychological illness and existential distress among patients with a life-threatening diagnosis.

In a press release, Johns Hopkins University said the drug had been given "in tightly controlled conditions in the presence of two clinically trained monitors" and that use of the compound was not recommended "outside of such a research or patient care setting."

Psilocybin is illegal in many countries. In the United States, it is classified along with heroin, marijuana and LSD as a Schedule I controlled substance, which means that, according to the federal government, it has "no currently accepted medical use in treatment."

Still, the trials suggest that spiritual feelings triggered by the drug may play a role in alleviating depression and severe anxiety, especially when dealing with a life-threatening illness.

“Many of the patients,” NYU researcher Stephen Ross observed, “would say something like, ‘Now I’ve experienced the death of the body, so I’m not so afraid.’ They get through it. They come out the other side.”

The study of 51 depressed cancer patients at John Hopkins reported reduced depression in 92 percent of those who received a high dose of psychedelic psilocybin, compared with only 32 percent among those who got an extremely low dose that should not have had much of an effect. Tests to measure depression were done five weeks after the psilocybin session.

NYU researchers found that 83 percent of volunteers treated with psilocybin had a significant reduction in depression symptoms seven weeks after they received a single dose of the psychedelic compound. That compared with only 14 percent of a control group that got all the therapy — but with a placebo pill containing niacin. There were a total of 29 research subjects in that group.

Both research teams found that most of the improvement in mood remained six months after the psychedelic sessions. Those who randomly received the placebo pills in the double-blind trials were later able to undergo a high-dose psilocybin session, and they also showed significant long-term psychological gains.

Ross, director of addiction psychiatry at NYU Langone Medical Center, said half of the New York volunteers going into the study described themselves as agnostics or atheists, and half had some kind of religious affiliation. But roughly equal numbers in both groups had experiences that could be described as "mystical." (See; Emphasis mine).

I told the psychotherapist I couldn't (and wouldn't) help him in getting a Schedule I drug made accessible to the public. The possible consequences of such studies was not lost on the enemies of God. The subject of "religious experience" is not encountered by many of us. It may only come into our lives when a neighbor's 20 year old goes travelling to "find themselves," or when someone at the Vatican II sect parish takes up yoga. For me, it was this phone call with an eccentric psychotherapist. Luckily, the True Faith is not based on experiences and feelings as is the Modernist Vatican II sect.

Beginning around the year 2000, neuroscientists have published a great deal of research showing numerous brain regions to be especially active during religious practices. Have these discoveries proven that religious experiences are products of the brain? What about Catholic mystics and seers? Has neuroscience filled in a gap in which God is squeezed out? Many atheists are claiming the "death of God" has finally arrived. There is even a term for such studies---Neurotheology---where brain science meets religious experience.

In this post, I will examine the claims of neurotheology and its impact and value to both the True Faith and the Vatican II sect.

Is God in the Frontal Lobes of the Brain?
Professor Andrew Newberg has pioneered studies, such as brain imaging techniques, to see how the brain reacts during various religious experiences in different religions. Interestingly, all religious experiences are not the same. According to Medical News Today, Newberg:
...draws from his numerous studies to show that both meditating Buddhists and praying Catholic [V2 Sect] nuns, for instance, have increased activity in the frontal lobes of the brain.

These areas are linked with increased focus and attention, planning skills, the ability to project into the future, and the ability to construct complex arguments.

Also, both prayer and meditation correlate with a decreased activity in the parietal lobes, which are responsible for processing temporal and spatial orientation.

Nuns, however — who pray using words rather than relying on visualization techniques used in meditation — show increased activity in the language-processing brain areas of the subparietal lobes.

But, other religious practices can have the opposite effect on the same brain areas. For instance, one of the most recent studies co-authored by Dr. Newberg shows that intense Islamic prayer — "which has, as its most fundamental concept, the surrendering of one's self to God" — reduces the activity in the prefrontal cortex and the frontal lobes connected with it, as well as the activity in the parietal lobes.

Here's another interesting finding from the same source:

Researchers led by Dr. Jeff Anderson, Ph.D. — from the University of Utah School of Medicine in Salt Lake City — examined the brains of 19 young Mormons using a functional MRI scanner.

When asked whether, and to what degree, the participants were "feeling the spirit," those who reported the most intense spiritual feelings displayed increased activity in the bilateral nucleus accumbens, as well as the frontal attentional and ventromedial prefrontal cortical loci.

These pleasure and reward-processing brain areas are also active when we engage in sexual activities, listen to music, gamble, and take drugs. The participants also reported feelings of peace and physical warmth.

"When our study participants were instructed to think about a savior, about being with their families for eternity, about their heavenly rewards, their brains and bodies physically responded," says first study author Michael Ferguson.

These findings echo those of older studies, which found that engaging in spiritual practices raises levels of serotonin, which is the "happiness" neurotransmitter, and endorphins.

The latter are euphoria-inducing molecules whose name comes from the phrase "endogenous morphine." Such neurophysiological effects of religion seem to give the dictum "Religion is the opium of the people" a new level of meaning. (See for both stories; Emphasis within both from the original).

This information immediately generates two profound questions: (a) Does brain activity mean the religious experience isn't real? and (b) Does brain activity prove that God doesn't exist as some atheists assert, but He is merely a byproduct of the brain?
Both questions will be answered in turn.

1. The experience and the brain are distinct.
Just because we know where in the brain something is happening, does not mean we have explained the experience it produces. An example may help to illustrate my point. I love eating chocolate ice cream (people who  know me will confirm this is my guilty pleasure). The thought of eating a scoop of chocolate ice cream starts a neural network firing in the so-called "reward centers" of the brain, and there is a release of chemicals that send me to my "happy place" as I eat my chocolate ice cream. Note well: it is one thing to understand the workings of the brain when going to eat chocolate ice cream, and something altogether different to experience the taste.

There is a famous "thought experiment" in philosophy which illustrates this point well. Let's suppose their is a scientist named "Mary" who is unable to see in color, and has apprehended all objects in black and white since birth. Mary is a neuroscientist who understands perfectly how the cones in the eyes transmit colors to the optic nerve and how they are properly understood by the brain at the base of the occipital lobe. Mary understands color. She has been praying to God for a cure to her eyesight problem, and one day she wakes up to find that God has given her the miracle for which she prayed; she can see perfectly in color! Does Mary's experience of color give her new information that her knowledge of color could not possibly have given to her before? The answer must be YES. 

Just because brain areas are more at work during prayers, meditation or other religious experiences, it does not follow that (1) the experience can be properly understood and (2) that it is only a product of the brain. Something distinct from neurons firing is taking place. 

2. Brain activity does not mean God doesn't exist.
Just because something is experienced through the brain doesn't mean it originated in the brain. I experience eating chocolate ice cream, but that by no means implies that the ice cream doesn't exist. Likewise, a drug that induces an hallucination of an apple, doesn't thereby prove that all apples are illusory.
Moreover, brain activity during prayer doesn't negate God. If anything, it is a plausible argument for the existence of God. If our brains are active during the eating of chocolate ice cream, isn't it reasonable that God created our brains to respond when we encounter Him? 

Neurotheology, Modernism, and the True Faith
The New Atheists are jumping on board the "neurotheology train" to attack the existence of God. I have shown that nothing about brain states requires a disbelief in the Christian God. However, neurotheology is a big help to the Vatican II sect, built as it is upon Modernism. 

If all brains show reactions when engaged in religious activity, doesn't that mean that everyone comes into contact with God regardless of their beliefs? How do we call the belief of the seer at Fatima true, and that of a Hindu "guru" false? Pope St. Pius X,  as part of his condemnation and campaign against Modernism, composed the Anti-Modernist Oath, to be sworn by every Catholic cleric in the world beginning in 1910. (It was abolished, for obvious reasons, in the Vatican II sect on July 17, 1967). The Oath affirms five chief Catholic Truths:

1. The existence of God can be demonstrated by human reason

2. Miracles and prophecies are a criteria of divine revelation

3. The Catholic Church was founded by the historical Person of Jesus Christ, and is attested to by history

4. Catholic doctrine is immutable

5. The Catholic Faith is both supernatural and reasonable

Note well that all of this is based on objective criteria extrinsic to a person. It is not subjective. This is how we can ascertain the Fatima seer as true (The Miracle of the Sun witnessed by thousands), versus the Hinu "guru" and his demonic "gods." The fifth paragraph of the Oath states:

"Fifthly, I hold with certainty and sincerely confess that faith is not a blind sentiment of religion welling up from the depths of the subconscious under the impulse of the heart and the motion of a will trained to morality; but faith is a genuine assent of the intellect to truth received by hearing from an external source. By this assent, because of the authority of the supremely truthful God, we believe to be true that which has been revealed and attested to by a personal God, our Creator and Lord."

Modernism will hold all religions as equally valid, since every religion springs from the "Vital Immanence" within man. Every religion is a believer’s legitimate "experience of God" (brain states!) A "Church" is simply a group of people who adhere to the same religious feelings. So all religions are good, providing that they satisfy the yearnings of the human heart. There is no "One True Church." All religions are of God and more or less true, because they come from the source of all things divine, which is the religious inner feelings (experience) of humans. Modernists, by necessity, must be ecumenical.

Neuroscience is a fascinating field of study. However, there are definite limits to what it can tell us. Those who wish to reduce belief in God to brain states have failed miserably to prove such. Modernism is based on the idea that Faith is not external and rational, but subjective and experiential. They would also love to prove all experiences of God, regardless of religion, are true. Expect to hear about how neurotheology "confirms the teachings of Vatican II" by the sect's apologists in the near future.

True Catholics go "out of their minds," to escape the truly insane proposition of the Vatican II sect, namely, that all religions are more or less good, valid, and come from "God." 

Monday, January 20, 2020

Poor Theology At A Steep Price

The pseudo-Traditionalist website 1 Peter 5 or 1P5, is run by Steve Skojec, whose name I prefer to write $teve $kojec. When you enter his website, you will be greeted by a large pop-up which reads:

  We've made it our mission to offer the unfiltered truth about the crisis in the Church and the beauty of the Faith. Your financial support makes our work possible. WE CAN'T DO THIS WITHOUT YOU! (Emphasis in original). You can click to make a donation, and he's making six figures from people gullible enough to donate (P.T. Barnum's old aphorism immediately comes to mind). The site is hard to define. It's not simply R&R like the SSPX. In $kojec's wacky world of theology-free "Catholicism," heretics can be pope, the Church can (and did) defect, and the teachings of the approved theologians must (of course) be eschewed. How that version of the "Church" can be passed off as "the unfiltered truth about the crisis" and the "beauty of the Faith (sic)" is beyond me.

1P5 has different members of the Vatican II sect writing articles. One such contributor, Michael Massey, authored a December 2, 2019 piece entitled, "Sedevacantism is Modern Luciferianism." The title had its intended shock value, as I thought $kojec had allowed someone completely off their rocker (as opposed to only "partially") to write for him. Mr. Massey is a young man (he appears to be in his 20s) from Australia, and we are informed that, "He writes history pieces for the Remnant newspaper in his spare time and struggles through law school the rest of the time." His writing made evident to me why he struggles through law school, and how the quality of lawyers in Australia must be abysmal if he was accepted to study.

Massey's tripe does not (as you would be led to believe from the title) claim that sedevacantists worship Satan. It actually is a reference to a Catholic bishop named Lucifer who fought the Arian heretics in the fourth century. You can read it in full at The article is a masterpiece of shoddy "scholarship." To wit:

  • It makes claims assumed to be proven ("facts not in evidence")
  • Has no relevant citations to any approved theologians (pre-Vatican II or otherwise)
  • It makes a passing reference to a work of Ecclesiastical History, with no page number or context in which it could be read
  • Makes false and/or unproven claims about Pope Liberius
  • Has false analogies 
I will now dissect the many problems with Mr. Massey's work, and why no one should bother with 1P5. As always, I bring this to you, the readership, free of charge! 

The Devil's Advocate-In-Training

Massey begins his anti-sedevacantist drivel thus: 
At some time, we have all encountered a sedevacantist — if not in person, at least online.  I won’t bore you with the theology of the sedevacantism except to say they hold that a heretic cannot be pope, with the most common strain affirming that Pius XII was the last legitimate pope (although I did once come across one who believed that Pius V was the last legitimate pope).

He won't "bore you" with the Catholic theology regarding sedevacantism because Massey doesn't know or understand it well enough to write about it. "They" (i.e., sedevacantists) do not hold a heretic can't be pope, the Church so teaches. 

Doctor of the Church St Alphonsus Liguori: "If ever a pope, as a private person, should fall into heresy, he would at once fall from the pontificate."Oeuvres Completes 9:232.

Theologian Iragui: "...theologians commonly concede that the Roman Pontiff, if he should fall into manifest heresy, would no longer be a member of the Church, and therefore could neither be called its visible head."
(See Manuale Theologiae Dogmaticae. Madrid: Ediciones Studium [1959], pg. 371). 

Canonist Badii: "A publicly heretical pope would no longer be a member of the Church; for this reason, he could no longer be its head."( See Institutiones Iuris Canonici. Florence: Fiorentina [1921], pgs. 160, 165). 

Theologian Prummer: "Through notorious and openly divulged heresy, the Roman Pontiff, should he fall into heresy, by that very fact [ipso facto] is deemed to be deprived of the power of jurisdiction even before any declaratory judgement by the Church....A pope who falls into public heresy would cease ipso facto to be a member of the Church; therefore, he would also cease to be head of the Church."(See Ius Canonicum. Rome: Gregorian [1943],  2:453). 

There are "Vacancy Pushers" as I call them, those pseudo-Traditionalists like Mike Bizzaro (his real name) who posits Pope St. Pius X as the last pope through twisted citations and wrong application of theological principles. Then there is cult leader and Feeneyite Richard Ibranyi (a former follower of the Dimond brothers--no surprise there) who pushes the time back to Pope Honorius II in 1130 AD. I haven't heard of any who push it to Pope St. Pius V, although it could be so. More likely than not, the person probably mispoke. In any case, it is completely beside the point. Massey throws out a red herring to obfuscate the issue. Just because there are some disturbed people who claim to be sedevacantists, does not mean there are not legitimate theological principles for determining that the pope has lost his office through the profession of heresy as a private person. This is a false "guilt by association."

The one error of sedevacantism is essentially pride. They raise their opinion over that of the Church when judging that the pope is a formal and manifest heretic, while we know that the Church teaches that the First See is judged by no man.

False. The maxim "The First See is Judged by no one" is a procedural norm, asserted by the Church against the Gallican heretics who claimed that an Ecumenical Council was superior to a pope and could judge him and his decisions. According to canonist Cappello, "Immunity of the Roman Pontiff. ‘The First See is judged by no one.’ (Canon 1556). This concerns the Apostolic See or the Roman Pontiff who by the divine law itself enjoys full and absolute immunity." (See Summa Juris Canonici 3:19) Pope Innocent III informs us the sin of heresy is the one sin we are permitted to judge when it comes to the pope. 

"To this end faith is so necessary for me that, though I have for other sins God alone as my judge, it is alone for a sin committed against faith that I may be judged by the Church. For ‘he who does not believe is already judged’.”(See Sermo 2: In Consecratione, Patrologia Latina 218:656). Moreover, "You are the salt of the earth… Still less can the Roman Pontiff boast, for he can be judged by men — or rather he can be
shown to be judged, if he manifestly ‘loses his savor’ in heresy."
(Sermo 4: In Consecratione,Ibid, 218:670). No council needed. A manifest heretic cannot be pope.

Please note that Massey is writing for $kojec, a man who thinks he knows better than the approved theologians and pompously tells others not to "think with the Church" but "think for yourself," as if once you have thought for yourself and are convinced that the Catholic Church is the One True Church, you must not submit to Her authoritative decisions and approved theologians. Yet sedevacantists are prideful according to Massey.

I will now piece together the pertinent points Massey makes throughout the remainder of the article:

Most Catholics know of St. Athanasius’s heroic defence of orthodoxy during the crisis, but few will know of his good friend and stalwart defender of the faith, Lucifer of Cagliari....

In his wonderful work History of the Catholic Church, Fr. Mourett described Lucifer as “an impetuous orthodox bishop.” In 360, Lucifer advocated shunning dealings with Arian heretics in De non consentiendo cum haereticis and compared Emperor Constantius with the idolatrous kings of Israel in De regibus apostaticis. At no stage throughout the crisis did Lucifer succumb to heresy; however, he certainly gave in to imprudence. Finally, after many more trials and tribulations too long to expound upon, Athanasius, Lucifer, and the orthodox prelates were restored, and a council was convened in Alexandria to finally resolve the Arian crisis...Seeing the Arians and semi-Arians he had fought against at Milan and elsewhere rehabilitated was too much for his [Bp. Lucifer] pride to swallow. How could they, who had been at enmity with Christ and His Church, be returned to their sees and positions of power above him, when he, a valiant defender of orthodoxy and veteran of the underground Church, still fought the good fight?

Lucifer declared that heretics — even repentant heretics — could not hold ecclesiastical offices, and he proceeded to condemn Liberius, Athanasius, and all the bishops of the Church who would not support him. He abandoned the Church and retired to Sardinia with his followers, who took up the name “Luciferians.” There Lucifer would live out the remainder of his life separated from communion with the pope, Athanasius, and the Church. The once great defender of orthodoxy died in schism...

When one is tempted to reject the pope and all the bishops of the Church due to the heresy and scandal they constantly promote, remember the example of St. Athanasius, who always fought to remain in communion even with the heretic Pope Liberius. When you recognize and resist the pope, you are in communion with St. Athanasius, but when you reject and resist him, you are in communion with Lucifer. (Emphasis mine).

Where to begin? Three points need to be refuted for this steaming pile of jabberwocky to completely collapse; the first of which was already done, namely, a heretic can be pope. The Church teaches such is not the case, and Massey assumes that a heretic can be pope without even attempting to prove his gratuitous assertion. The other two false points will now be tackled:

1. Pope Liberius was a heretic and
2. Sedevacantists are "schismatics" like Bp. Lucifer

Pope Liberius Vindicated by St. Robert Bellarmine

That Pope Liberius was not a heretic was amply demonstrated by Doctor of the Church St. Robert Bellarmine, in his tome Papal Error? A Defense of Popes said to have Erred in Faith. First, I must comment on the whole Pope Liberius-St. Athanasius affair. Pope Liberius is one of the most calumniated popes in history. Michael Davies, the best known apologist for the R&R position of the SSPX, made as his raison d'etre the attempt to equate the Arian heresy of the fourth century with what happened in the wake of Vatican II (calling Abp. Lefebvre "the modern day St. Athanasius").  It is noteworthy that $kojec's website sells Davies' books.

Here is a brief background from the Encyclopedia Britannica:
Liberius, (born, Rome [Italy]—died September 24, 366, Rome), pope from 352 to 366. He was elected on May 17, 352, to succeed Pope St. Julius I.

Liberius was pope during the turbulence caused by the rise of Arianism—a heresy teaching that Christ was not truly divine but was rather a created being. Liberius was pope under the Arian Roman emperor Constantius II, who opposed both the Council of Nicaea (which had condemned Arianism) and Bishop St. Athanasius of Alexandria (who was Arianism’s most virulent opponent). Liberius’s first act as pope was to write Constantius requesting a council at Aquileia, Italy, to discuss Athanasius, but the emperor independently effected Athanasius’s condemnation. In 355 Liberius was one of the few bishops who refused to sign the condemnation, which had been imposed at Milan by imperial command upon all the Western bishops. Consequently, Constantius exiled Liberius to Beroea (modern VĂ©roia, Greece), and the Arian archdeacon Felix (II) appropriated the papacy.

In late 357 Liberius went to Sirmium (modern Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia). Supposedly dejected, he agreed to sign certain unorthodox formulas that served to emasculate the Nicene Creed (the Creed had implicitly disavowed Arianism). Liberius also agreed to sever relations with Athanasius and submitted to the authority of the emperor. But Constantius recalled him to Rome, where he returned in 358, joyfully received by the Roman Christians. (See

Davies (and other R&R) claim that Liberius was a heretic for (a) signing the heretical Arian formulas (b) consorting with heretics, and (c) excommunicating St. Athanasius. Are these allegations accurate?

First, here is a list of the main facts by noted Traditionalist author John Daly:

1. Pope Liberius was in reality a staunch opponent, not only of the Arians, but also of the Semi-Arians.

2. He was sent into exile by the Semi-Arian Emperor Constantius precisely because of the failure of the attempts of that emperor and his toady bishops to influence him to excommunicate St. Athanasius and accept as orthodox a compromised Semi-Arian statement of Catholic doctrine concerning Our Lord’s Divinity.

3. Constantius appointed Felix to replace the absent Liberius in the See of Rome, but Felix was not at that time accepted as pope by the Romans.

4. Felix himself did not in fact subscribe to Arianism, but he did acknowledge ecclesiastical communion with arianisers, for which reason, the fifth century historian-bishop Theodoret informs us, "none of the citizens of Rome entered into the church while he was inside." (History of the Latin Church, Bk. II, c. 17)

5. The people of Rome remained loyal to Liberius and protested to the emperor at his detention.

6. Eventually their peaceable protests gave way to rioting, and as a result Liberius was permitted by Constantius to return to Rome.

7. On his return he was received as a victor there by the populace.

8. His reign in Rome then continued for a few years more, during which time he remained entirely orthodox, refused to compromise in the slightest degree on the orthodox doctrine of the Council of Nicea, and was in full communion and friendship with St. Athanasius.

9. Some extant historical texts apparently of that period assert that the immediate reason for his return to Rome was that he had subscribed to a Semi-Arian formula. But many others favour the contrary view.

10. The weight of subsequent scholarship is strongly in favour of Liberius’s orthodoxy, and orthodox Catholic scholars in particular – and it is they who have studied the subject in greatest depth and are most reliable – are overwhelmingly of the view that Liberius never fell, remained orthodox throughout his exile, and always remained in full communion with St. Athanasius.

(See Michael Davies: An Evaluation, Tradibooks, [2015], pgs. 434-435).

I will now summarize St. Robert Bellarmine's defense of Pope Liberius in Chapter Two of his work Papal Error?, pgs. 17-30.

  • There are two things certain about Liberius, and one in doubt. It is certain that from the beginning of his pontificate even to exile, he suffered for the Catholic faith, and was a keen defender of the Catholic religion. All writers who spoke on those times witness this fact
  • It is certain that Liberius, after he returned from exile, was also truly orthodox and pious
  • It appears he did wrong when in exile
  • St. Athanasius teaches teaches that Liberius was not truly a heretic, because he was compelled against his will by the force of the rack to do what he did. Nor must it be thought to be truly his opinion, which had been twisted from him by threats and terrors 
  • As is gathered from the words of St. Athanasius as well as by the epistles of Liberius himself, Liberius committed two faults: First, that he subscribed to the condemnation of St. Athanasius, the Second, that he had communicated with heretics--but in neither did he expressly violate the Faith
  • Although heretics persecuted Athanasius for the faith, nevertheless they pretended it was not due to the faith but morals and Liberius consented to the condemnation on that basis, not on account of the faith
  • For equal reason, Liberius communicated with heretics because they feigned that they were Catholics. In his epistles, Liberius says that he communicated with Oriental Bishops because he discovered that their faith agreed with the Catholic faith, and was foreign to Arian treachery
  • The confessions Liberius signed did not have the word Homoousion, but still were entirely Catholic. It happens that Liberius not only did not subscribe to the Arian confession, but even published a Confession before he left Sirmium wherein he excommunicated those who denied that the Son is the same as the Father in substance, as well as in all other matters. This he did because the Arians spread a false rumor that Liberius began to teach the Son is not consubstantial with the Father
  • If this is so, why does Jerome say Liberius bent and subscribed to heresy? Although Liberius did not expressly consent to heresy, still he was interpreted as having done so because he permitted Athanasius to be condemned, and communicated with heretics who feigned being Catholics 
That pretty much exonerates Pope Liberius of the charge of heresy. To those who repeat with Michael Davies the oft mentioned canard that St. Athanasius was canonized and Pope Liberius was not; this is not accurate. As John Lane explains in his work cited above (chapter 10):

"Another fact which Davies does not mention, even if only to try to explain it away, is that Pope Liberius is honored as a saint in the ancient Latin Martyrology. Although Davies says repeatedly that Athanasius was canonized and Liberius was not, this is in fact quite false. Neither was formally canonized, as the formal procedure of canonization did not exist at the period that the Church began to revere them (which was immediately after their deaths); but both benefited from the Church’s official recognition as saints in the form which did then exist, by their inclusion in the martyrologies of West and East." (Emphasis in original).

The Luciferian Analogy
Other than a brief quote from an ecclesiastical history text, there are no citations to Bishop Lucifer given by Massey. According to ecclesiastical historian Fr. Charles Poulet, "...certain writers representing an unorthodox reaction against Arianism, who held firmly to the view that penitent Arians should not be directly reconciled with the Church, but made to do penance and merit that favor...Lucifer's writing were purely invective in character and their titles betray his intransigence. He held that orthodox Christians should have no social intercourse with heretics and no mercy should be shown the enemies of God. The principal followers of Lucifer of Cagliari were Gregory of Eliberus, and the Roman deacon Hilary, who even demanded that all repentant Arians be rebaptized." (See A History of the Catholic Church: for the Use of Colleges Seminaries and Universities, [1934], 1:170; Emphasis mine). 

Let's now compare to the last paragraph of Massey:
When one is tempted to reject the pope and all the bishops of the Church due to the heresy and scandal they constantly promote, remember the example of St. Athanasius, who always fought to remain in communion even with the heretic Pope LiberiusWhen you recognize and resist the pope, you are in communion with St. Athanasius, but when you reject and resist him, you are in communion with Lucifer

  • The Church cannot promote, even once, that which is heretical or immoral through the popes and bishops because the Church is Indefectible; a dogma. 
According to theologian Herrmann:

"The Church is infallible in her general discipline. By the term general discipline is understood the laws and practices which belong to the external ordering of the whole Church. Such things would be those which concern either external worship, such as liturgy and rubrics, or the administration of the sacraments… If She [the Church] were able to prescribe or command or tolerate in Her discipline something against faith and morals, or something which tended to the detriment of the Church or to the harm of the faithful, She would turn away from her divine mission, which would be impossible."
(Institutiones Theologiae Dogmaticae, Vol. 1, p. 258; Emphasis mine)

Pope Gregory XVI, Mirari Vos, Para. #9:

"[T]he discipline sanctioned by the Church must never be rejected or be branded as contrary to certain principles of natural law. It must never be called crippled, or imperfect or subject to civil authority. In this discipline the administration of sacred rites, standards of morality, and the reckoning of the rights of the Church and her ministers are embraced."

Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis, Para. #66

"Certainly the loving Mother [the Church] is spotless in the Sacraments, by which she gives birth to and nourishes her children; in the faith which she has always preserved inviolate; in her sacred laws imposed on all; in the evangelical counsels which she recommends; in those heavenly gifts and extraordinary graces through which, with inexhaustible fecundity, she generates hosts of martyrs, virgins and confessors."

  • Pope Liberius was not a heretic, therefore there was nothing for Bishop Lucifer to "resist." When he resisted his decision on reception of repentant Arians, that is when he became schismatic and outside the Church
  • A pope cannot be a heretic without loss of ecclesiastical office, so there would be no pope to resist. Massey's statements to the contrary are not supported, nor does he even attempt to prove them with relevant citations to Church decrees or the teachings of the approved theologians
  • Bishop Lucifer did, after his break with the Church, consort with heretical rebaptizers. He was not as "theologically orthodox" as Massey would like us to believe 
It becomes pretty apparent that there is no similarity between the followers of Bishop Lucifer and sedevacantists. An accurate final sentence for Massey should read, "When you recognize and resist the pope, you are not being Catholic, and are in union with the theologically confused (at best), or the heretical who believe in a 'Church' that can defect." 

Sedevacantism is the only theologically coherent explanation for Vatican II, and the sect it spawned, which gives its members new morals, new faith, and new sacraments antithetical to all that is true and good. The Church cannot defect from the faith--as that very same faith proclaims---but individual members of the hierarchy can so defect, as the faith likewise teaches. 

$teve $kojec of 1P5 wants you to "think for yourself" and reject the teachings on the ordinary papal Magisterium as "ultramontanist," and disregard the teachings of the approved theologians. Instead, $kojec will do your thinking for you, as he will read over what claptrap the Modernist Vatican II sect decrees and let you know, by his own "authority," whether or not it conforms to tradition and should be accepted or "resisted." His "reason-challenged" writers, whom he publishes, will do the same, so read 1P5 and check both your brain and faith at the door. 

By so doing, $kojec is keeping numerous people in Bergoglio's sect and endangering their eternal salvation. It doesn't seem to bother him at all that these theology-free opinion pieces don't even make sense, as long as he's making lots of cents (and dollars). "For what shall it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his soul?" (St. Mark 8:36). 

Monday, January 13, 2020

False Christs

Recently, my best friend called me and said, "You have to come over and watch something I saw." I inquired what it was, but he just told me to come over and watch it with him as soon as I had some free time. A little while later, he showed me a movie he watched earlier entitled Zeitgeist: The Movie. Produced in 2007 by one Peter Joseph (b. 1979), it is an over two hour long movie in three parts. Joseph is the founder of the Zeitgeist Movement which has been accurately described as "the New Age Movement meets conspiracy theorists," and it produced the coined term "Conspirituality"---(Conspiracy + Spirituality).

The movie is full of the material published in rags like The National Enquirer, where Bigfoot, aliens, and nutty conspiracy theories are the tabloid fodder each week. Unfortunately, many of these same ideas are entertained by Traditionalists, and held dear by some. Such interesting notions include: the moon landing was faked, the Earth is flat, and 9-11 was staged. Zeitgeist does not mention the moon landing or the alleged flat Earth, but it has the same central idea, stated in the movie itself, "there are people guiding your life and you don't even know it."

When my friend asked for my reaction, I told him, "This is basically the same as The Matrix." I referenced the blockbuster 1999 film starring Keanu Reeves, which takes place in a dystopian future. Sophisticated computers and humans had a war in which the machines won and all surviving humans were placed in a giant computer simulation wherein they believe everything to be normal, while in reality the machines have people in pods, draining their energy for their nefarious purposes. The protagonist "Neo" (an anagram of the "One"), feels something isn't right with reality, and with the help of a few others like him, he realizes the truth about the world while the others remain as puppets, thinking all is as it appears to be. To be clear, there really are conspiracies at work in the world. There is even the crime of conspiracy (e.g., conspiracy to rob a bank or commit murder). The problem is when everything becomes a wild-eyed conspiracy tale (I refer to it as "The Great Conspiracy").

New Agers are basically Gnostics of old, those heretics who believed they held special knowledge of God apart from the Church. They are the "enlightened few." My friend really wanted my input on Part One of the movie, which is based loosely on the works of Dorothy Milne Murdock (d. 2015) who wrote mostly under the pen name "Acharya S." She supported the Christ myth theory; i.e., Christ never existed as an historical Person, but was rather a hodgepodge of various pre-Christian myths. Her books include The Christ Conspiracy: The Greatest Story Ever Sold (1999), and Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver (2014).

The idea of the "Christ Myth" will be the subject matter of my post. It is important because, as aforementioned, many Traditionalists buy into this "everything is a conspiracy" lunacy with devastating impact on the Faith. A Traditionalist I knew actually lost the Faith and became an atheist for some time before (Deo gratias) returning to the Church. When I asked him how he could possibly go from the True Faith to atheism, his answer was not what I was expecting. He believed that Jesus Christ never existed; He was invented as part of a Jewish conspiracy to weaken and undermine the Roman Empire from within, so that they would "turn the other cheek," and become "emasculated" by Christianity.

I had a long talk with my friend, and he was glad that the "Christ Myth Theory" is itself a myth. I will now set down in this post the information I imparted to him.

A Messiah from Paganism?

The Zeitgeist movie informs us that in the ancient religions of Egypt, Persia, and Greece (among others) there were gods born of a virgin on December 25, were accompanied by twelve followers, performed miracles, were crucified, and rose from the dead. Therefore, Jesus Christ is a fabrication from various mythologies. This goes much father than the assertion that Jesus of Nazareth was not the Christ; it claims He never existed at all. This is not a view held by a small minority of New Age loonies led by Peter Joseph. There is a 2011 book by Joseph Atwill entitled  Caesar's Messiah: The Roman Conspiracy to Invent Jesus, and a 2014 book by Kenneth Humphries called Jesus Never Existed: An Introduction to the Ultimate Heresy. The synopsis of Atwill's book on reads:

Was Jesus the invention of a Roman emperor? The author of this ground-breaking book believes he was. "Caesar’s Messiah" reveals the key to a new and revolutionary understanding of the origin of Christianity, explaining what is the New Testament, who is the real Jesus, and how Christ's second coming already occurred. The clues leading to these startling conclusions are found in the writings of the first-century historian Flavius Josephus, whose "Wars of the Jews" is one of the only historical chronicles of this period. Closely comparing the work of Josephus with the New Testament Gospels, "Caesar’s Messiah" demonstrates that the Romans directed the writing of both. Their purpose: to offer a vision of a "peaceful Messiah" who would serve as an alternative to the revolutionary leaders who were rocking first-century Israel...

What are we to make of these claims? In short, the assertions are absolutely false on several counts:

  • The so-called similarities between paganism's myths and Christ are either twisted out of context, or proven lies

For example, the Zeitgeist movie claims that "Mithra [Sometimes "Mithras"] of Persia [a false god], was born of a virgin on December 25th; he had twelve disciples and performed miracles, and upon his death was buried for three days and resurrected." Mithra was not "born of a virgin." He emerged fully grown from a rock. The fact that rocks don't have sex does not make it a "virgin" except in a most contorted and deceptive way. This description of a "virgin" does not comport with the accepted English definition. There is no proof that Mithra was born on December 25th. It was simply made up (read:"they lied"). Furthermore the Church never defined the date of Christ's birth and December 25th isn't mentioned in the Bible. How could there be a similarity?

There is a painting of Mithra surrounded by twelve figures, but there is no mention anywhere of them being disciples; they actually correspond to the pagan Zodiac signs. Nor is there any ancient record of Mithra dying and being resurrected.  (See history scholar R.L. Gordon, "Mithraism and Roman Society: Social factors in the explanation of the religious change in the Roman Empire," Religion, Vol.2 , Issue 2, Autumn 1972, pg. 96. Gordon states bluntly, "There was no death of Mithras.") So far, it doesn't sound very similar, does it?

The movie claims the same similarities between Christ and the Egyptian false god Horus. Horus was conceived when his mother had sex with the dead body of his father Osiris. Again, in what sense is necrophilia a form of a "virgin birth"? The claim the Horus was crucified comes exclusively on images of Horus with his arms spread out--there is no "crucifixion" shown. The story ends with Horus being stung by a scorpion, and his mother begging the false god Thoth to bring him back from the dead; not a resurrection whereby Christ rose by His Own Divine Power.

The "similarities" are actually dissimilarities.

  • Pagans copied from Christ
According to historian R.L. Gordon, the Mithra cult began no earlier than the early second century, so there's no possible way it could have influenced the New Testament which was already completed by the year 100 A.D. (Ibid, pg. 93). The cult of Isis and Osiris (apart from Horus) ends with Osiris becoming lord of the underworld while Isis regathers his dismembered body from the Nile River and subsequently magically restores it. E. A. Wallace Budge, recognized as "one of the greatest authorities of our century on ancient religions," (See Wilbur M. Smith, Therefore Stand ,[1981], p. 583) has this to say about the cult of Osiris: "There is nothing in the texts which justify the assumption that Osiris knew he would rise from the dead, and that he would become king and judge of the dead, or that Egyptians believed that Osiris died on their behalf and rose again in order that they might also rise from the dead." (Ibid).  Smith also quotes French scholar Andre Boulanger’s observation that, "The idea that the god dies and rises again to lead his worshipers to eternal life does not exist in any Hellenic pagan ["mystery"] religion." (Ibid).

Religion scholar Mircea Eliade points out that not only is the idea of Christians borrowing from the pagans wrong, but that any borrowing probably first began on the part of the pagans:

In 1958, one year before Campbell started publishing his fanciful theories in the Masks of God volumes, Mircea Eliade published in Patterns of Initiation a series of lectures he had given at the University of Chicago in the fall of 1956. In one of those lectures, Eliade said recent research did not support the theories that the origin of Christianity was influenced by pagans. "There is no reason to suppose that primitive Christianity was influenced by the Hellenistic mysteries," said Eliade. In fact, the reverse may actually be true:
"The renaissance of the mysteries in the first centuries of our era may well be related to the rise and spread of Christianity…. certain mysteries [pagan myths] may well have reinterpreted their ancient rites in the light of the new religious values contributed by Christianity." (See Tom Snyder, Myth Conceptions (1995), p. 191).

Eliade added that it was only much later, when Christianity had to compete with the renaissance of the pagan religions, that Christians began to borrow from the religious symbols of these cults. They did this in order to help them explain their religion to others (not to modify it), thereby hoping to win converts.

  • Demonstrable drivel about "pagan" Easter from the "New Atheists"
Richard Dawkins, a God-hating atheist (or really an anti-theist; one who wants God stamped out of society) promoted a meme on Facebook that claimed the following:

Easter was originally the celebration of Ishtar, the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility and sex. Her symbols (like the egg and bunny) were and still are fertility and sex symbols (or did you actually think eggs and bunnies had anything to do with the resurrection?) After Constantine decided to Christianize the Empire, Easter was changed to represent Jesus. But at its roots, Easter (which is how you pronounce Ishtar) is all about celebrating fertility and sex.

The truth:
1. Ishtar is pronounced "Easter." No. There is not one credible linguistic source I could find to support this assertion. It is pronounced "ISH-tar" not "EAST-er." According to historian Anthony McRoy: "The argument largely rests on the supposed pagan associations of the English and German names for the celebration (Easter in English and Ostern in German). It is important to note, however, that in most other European languages, the name for the Christian celebration is derived from the Greek word Pascha, which comes from pesach, the Hebrew word for Passover. Easter is the Christian Passover festival.

Historian Anthony McRoy puts things in context, since the Church celebrates "Maundy Thursday" and "Good Friday" and "Holy Saturday." The names of the days of the week all derive from pagan origin; Thursday for the Norse pagan "god" Thor, Friday for the Germanic pagan "goddess" Freya, and Saturday for the Roman pagan "god" Saturn. Does the use of these names denigrate the True God, or imply we honor these false deities? Does it render the historical Last Supper, Crucifixion, and Vigil of the Resurrection "pagan"? This is a classic case of "guilt by association." 

2. Easter is originally the celebration of Ishtar, the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility and sex.
Ishtar was associated with fertility and sex.  Easter is always celebrated near the Feast of Passover, when it took place. The Council of Nicea (325 A.D.) set the formula for calculating the date. (The Eastern Schismatics use a different calculation, and usually celebrate Easter a week later than Catholics and Protestants). In short, Easter has everything to do with Passover (when it took place) and nothing to do with the pagan deity Ishtar.

3.  Her symbols (like the egg and the bunny) were and still are fertility and sex symbols (or did you actually think eggs and bunnies had anything to do with the resurrection?)
Ishtar's symbols were the lion, the gate and the eight-pointed star; I can’t find any evidence of eggs or rabbits symbolically belonging to this pagan deity. (See, e.g.,; there is no mention of rabbits or eggs). Admittedly, most of the popular associations with Easter do come from pagan traditions rather than Christian. However, traditionally the Church has taken these pagan elements and "converted" them to convey Christian principles. For example, the egg is a common pagan sign of fertility, but for Catholicism, the egg is often used to signify the resurrection to new life promised us by Christ's resurrection (See 1 Corinthians 15:37-38). The Polish were prominent in making this connection: "Polish traditions taught that eggs were symbols of 'new life' and used them in church services, which represented rebirth through the resurrection of Jesus Christ." (See

Rabbits likewise are known for being fruitful and multiplying.  Butterflies are indicators of spring, and therefore new life, and at Easter, make a great symbol of the resurrection. Just as the caterpillar "dies," is "buried" in its cocoon, and then emerges in a "new body," so too Our Lord died, was buried, and was resurrected on the third day. We who belong to Him will be resurrected also (See Romans 8:11). Hiding eggs once symbolized the mysteries of the world of the gods and goddesses, who had to be coaxed into returning life to the Earth in spring. Early members of the Church used hiding-and-finding Easter eggs as a teaching tool to children that we have been "hidden" from God’s loving presence by our sin, but we are "found" by Christ, who forgives us, loves us, and treasures us (See St. Luke 15:4-7).

4. After Constantine decided to Christianize the Empire, Easter was changed to represent Jesus.
There is no citation to any relevant historical authority to support this ludicrous claim. When Constantine was alive, English--in any known form today--didn't even exist, and the emperor spoke Latin, in which the word would be pascha. According to Merriam-Webster, "The history of English is conventionally, if perhaps too neatly, divided into three periods usually called Old English (or Anglo-Saxon), Middle English, and Modern English. The earliest period begins with the migration of certain Germanic tribes from the continent to Britain in the fifth century A.D., though no records of their language survive from before the seventh century, and it continues until the end of the eleventh century or a bit later." (See; Emphasis mine).

 There was no "Easter" at the time, and the celebration of Christ's Resurrection had been going on for almost 300 years.

5.  But at its roots Easter (which is pronounced Ishtar) was all about celebrating fertility and sex. 
It would be more believable to say Easter is all about the Tooth Fairy. Dawkins is a biologist and biology professor. He should stick with the subject. To promote a meme containing such blatant falsehood which an eighth grader could debunk doing minimal research, should drive Dawkins out of academia permanently. 

Other problems with Christ as a "Pagan Myth"
  • Similarity does not prove dependence. The fact of some similarities between Christianity and the pagans no more proves Christianity was derived from them than similarities between people and monkeys proves people derived from monkeys
  • As a devout Jew turned Catholic, the Apostle Paul would never have considered borrowing his teachings from pagan religion. There is not the slightest hint of pagan beliefs in his writings
  • Christianity is demonstrably grounded in the actual events of history, not myths. Even hard core atheist historians admit Jesus of Nazareth was truly an historical Person
  •  If any borrowing did occur, it was the other way around. In other words, as Christianity grew in influence and expanded in the second and third centuries, the pagan systems, recognizing this threat, would be likely to borrow elements of Christianity to capitalize upon its success. For example, the pagan rite of bathing in bull’s blood (taurobolium) initially held its spiritual efficacy at 20 years. But once in competition with Christianity, the cult of Cybele, recognizing that Christians were promised eternal life by faith in Jesus, raised the efficacy of their rite "from 20 years to eternity." (See Ronald H. Nash, Christianity & the Hellenistic World, [1984], pgs. 171-172). 
My good buddy was put at ease that Christ is not a fictitious creation of some conspiracy that made up a story from pagan myths.  Unfortunately, there are those modern day Gnostics who believe, like Peter Joseph, that nothing is as it seems, and only a chosen few can know the truth. Everything is part of the "Great Conspiracy." The Earth is flat, Elvis is alive, the Newtown shootings never took place and no one died there. If you confront them with facts, they will dismiss them as "part of the Great Conspiracy." I admit that I have a hard time dealing with such people because you can't reason with them. Once, I asked such a person, "How do you know 9-11 being faked isn't what the conspirators want you to believe because they don't want you to think it was real?" "That's crazy!" was the response. I had to suppress my laughter. 

Now, we have New Age conspiracy theorists selling the lie that Christ came from pagan myths and never existed.  Dorothy Milne Murdock, one of the "Christ Myth" theorists I referenced above, went to Judgement in 2015. If she didn't repent before death, she learned to her chagrin (and everlasting regret), that Christ is real and so is Hell.  

Monday, January 6, 2020

When Strangers Come Knocking---Part 5

This is the next installment of my series to be published the first Monday of each month.

There are members of false sects, like Jehovah's Witnesses, that come knocking door-to-door hoping to convert you. Instead of ignoring them, it is we who should try and convert them. In 1 Peter 3:16, our first Pope writes, "But in thy hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks thee to give the reason for the hope that thou hast. But do this with gentleness and respect,..." Before the Great Apostasy, the Church would send missionaries to the ends of the Earth to make as many converts as possible.

Those in false religions don't always come (literally) knocking at your door. It may be a Hindu at work who wants you to try yoga. It could be a "Christian Scientist" who lives next door and invites you to come to their reading room. Each month, I will present a false sect. Unlike the Vatican II sect, I do not see them as a "means of salvation" or possessing "elements of truth" that lead to salvation. That is heresy. They lead to damnation, and the adherents of the various sects must be converted so they may be saved.

In each month's post, I will present one false sect and give an overview of:

  • The sect's history
  • Their theology
  • Tips on how to share the True Faith with them

One of the fastest growing religions in the world today is Wicca, commonly known as "witchcraft," or the Craft (always capitalized). According to Newsweek magazine in 2018:

Witchcraft and other pagan religious practices increased in the U.S. over the past few decades, with millennials turning to astrology and tarot cards as they turn away from Christianity and other traditionally dominant Abrahamic religions.

The number of witches and Americans practicing Wicca religious rituals increased dramatically since the 1990s, with several recent studies indicating there may be at least 1.5 million witches across the country. A Trinity College study conducted in 1990 estimated only about 8,000 Wiccans in the U.S., but the increase has been led by a rejection of mainstream Christianity among young Americans as well as a rise in occultism.

With 1.5 million potential practicing witches across the U.S., witchcraft has more followers than the 1.4 million mainline members of the Presbyterian church. (See 

There are several misconceptions about Wicca. Practitioners of Wicca are not all female; male adherents are called witches also, not "warlocks." While they are occultists, witchcraft or Wicca is not a blanket term for all forms of occult activity. Most do not worship Satan overtly and directly (the large majority deny belief in Satan), and they do not practice human or animal sacrifice. The idea of a witch as an ugly old hag riding a broomstick, was popularized by the 1939 cult classic movie The Wizard of Oz. 

The movie was insidious insofar as it began the ever-growing trend of depicting witches as "good" and evil. All forms of occultism are condemned by God specifically in the Bible and in the teachings of His One True Church. The Wizard of Oz was based on a book of the same name written by Frank Baum, an occultist who claimed he had "channeled" the idea from an other-worldly source. (See Michael Patrick Hearn edition; The Annotated Wizard of Oz, New York: Clarkson N. Potter, [1973]) In the movie, the protagonist (Dorothy) and her friends are following the "yellow brick road." In Heaven, it is said there are "streets of gold" (See Apoc. 21). They go to see the "all knowing, all powerful" Wizard of Oz. Only God is omniscient and omnipotent. It turns out the Wizard is just a fake. (Wiccans denigrate or even deny the Christian God). Lastly, they are told that the power to obtain all they want (courage, brains, a heart, and going home) "lies within"--a common theme in both witchcraft and Satanism; independence from God, you are "god." 

Why the Wiccan revival? Why are Millennials adopting this form of Neo-paganism? These questions will be explored in this post along with a very serious warning--Wiccans are probably living near you, as covens are not necessarily brick and mortar buildings. You could have a witch next door; and they could try and influence your children. 

Generation Hex
Whereas my generation, or Generation X (circa 1961-1981) was more conservative than the Baby Boomers (circa 1946-1960), the Millennials who followed are really lost as they have felt the full impact of a post-Catholic, Vatican II sect world. (I shudder to think of those who come after). What's the attraction? First, an examination of Wicca's history.

Modern Wicca is basically paganism revived. Gerald B. Gardner is credited with the modern day revival of Wicca. Throughout his life Gardner was fascinated with many different aspects of the occult. He had been a follower of the Satanist Aleister Crowley and a member of Crowley’s occult lodge Ordo Templi Orientis. It is known that Gardner copied Crowley’s rites and rituals, which fully embrace and promote his doctrines of Satanism, and presented them as Wiccan. Most Wiccans are unaware of the direct connection to Satanism. (See e.g., Witchcraft Today by Gardener [1954]). 

It is hard to pin down the belief system of modern Wicca because, like Unitarian Universalists, they are a doctrinal melting pot. Here is an overview of most ideals modern witchcraft holds.

Wicca is polytheistic, its pantheon consisting of the "Horned God" which is viewed as the consort of the Goddess, and the Triple Goddess herself, whose aspects are the maiden, the mother, and the crone. It is a form of Neo-paganism, since they derive their impetus from a spiritual re-emergence and restatement of ancient pagan principles. They are:
  • anti-authoritarian: they don't like rules in general.  
  • anti-dogmatic: they have a general belief system that each adherent is free to adopt wholly or partially.
  • the "Wiccan Rede" or "Pagan Ethic," which states "If you harm none, do as thou please." There is no one correct set of ethics. Each witch decides for himself /herself what is right and wrong and what constitutes "harm" to another.
They believe in "tolerance," towards all beliefs, which is seen as a virtue because all beliefs "contain some good." (sounds like the Vatican II document Lumen Gentium). Most interestingly, the "Thirteen Principles of Wiccan Belief," adopted in 1974 by the Council of American Witches states:
  • We seek to live in harmony with Nature, in ecological balance offering fulfillment to life and consciousness within an evolutionary concept. (See Francis' "encyclical" Laudato si).
  • We value sex as pleasure, as the symbol and embodiment of life, and as one of the sources of energies used in magickal (spelled with a "k" magick means the 'art of causing change to occur in conformity with the will' as opposed to sleight of hand magic tricks) practice and religious worship (Therefore homosexuality, bisexuality, and all perversions are encouraged).
  • Our only animosity towards Christianity, or toward any other religion or philosophy of life, is to the extent that its institutions have claimed to be "the only way," and have sought to deny freedom to others and to suppress other ways of religious practice and belief.(Emphasis mine; the hatred they bear for the One True Church should be apparent, and it should be equally obvious why they like the Vatican II sect which eschews dogma for ecumenism).

Finally, this disclaimer by the Wiccans, "We do not accept the concept of absolute evil, nor do we worship any entity known as 'Satan' or 'the Devil,' as defined by Christian tradition." Really? 1 Corinthians 10:20, "No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want thee to be participants with demons." (Emphasis mine) Notice "thirteen" principles. Covens are ideally composed of 13 members in mockery of Jesus Christ and His twelve Apostles. Covens cast spells which sometimes mock the Eucharist. They often worship in the nude. Women are seen as equals in all aspects to men, and in some places are given greater deference. In a "banishing spell" published in Canadian witch Robin Skelton's book, The Practice of Witchcraft, the first words read as follows: "If this one has hurt this other one, let him be racked with the same pain." (See The Practice of Witchcraft, Press Porcepic Ltd., 1990, pp. 179). So much for "doing no harm." 

 Skelton's book also contains a spell to cause a miscarriage, "Take back this gift. Let the womb release the human fish in its bubbled seas. Unclench the gut. Let the birth run out that none may be hurt in flesh or heart." (Ibid, pgs. 169-170). As a result of feminist ideology inherent within Wicca (seeing the genders as equal or females greater), God the Father is viewed as evil (along with His Only Begotten Son), and so are the Ten Commandments which He gave to Moses. In the Wiccan world, Cain is a hero and so are the Sodomites whom God the Father judged and destroyed. Nevertheless, many Wiccans who join are fooled to believe that they only worship nature, and they can control nature because of a type of pagan pantheism, whereby they can manipulate the "force in all things" (think: Star Wars franchise of movies). 

According to authors Marla Alupoaicei and Dillon Burroughs, in their book entitled Generation Hex: The Subtle Dangers of Wicca, (2008), women and teens especially seem to be attracted to Wicca, they say, because of the amount of "power" the religion promises. Learning to cast spells gives them the feeling that they can control the people who may have authority over them.

Many women also seem attracted to Wicca’s notion that men and women are absolute equals. They do not adhere to a patriarchal structure like in the Bible and the Church. A woman can become a high priestess in the church just as a man can become a high priest, the author says. The religion is also very open to people with "alternative lifestyles" (i.e., sexual perverts) such as sodomites and the whole "LGBTQIA+++" depravity.

Many of the people that Alupoaicei interviewed for the book had also experienced a lot of pain in their lives before turning to Wicca, which suggests a need for revenge. 

Media Indoctrination
The number of television shows and movies that portray Wicca in a positive way is enormous. One need only think of the Harry Potter books and movies as but one very famous example. Just as in The Wizard of Oz, author J.K. Rowling claims to have received her inspiration for Harry Potter from an other worldly source. For Rowling, during a train ride in 1990, she claimed, "I was staring out the window and the idea of Harry Potter just came. He appeared in my mind's eye fully formed." (See Reuters, "Harry Potter Just Strolled into My Head" 7/17/00) She also claims to hear in her head the conversations she writes:  "Dialogue just comes to me as if I'm overhearing a conversation." 

Movies and TV shows such as Bewitched, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, The Craft, Practical Magic, and Charmed are only some of the propaganda the public (especially teenagers) receive regarding Wicca. According to one Wiccan source, the two favorite movies of witches are:

The Craft (1996), A newcomer to a Vatican II sect prep high school falls in with a trio of outcast teenage girls who practice witchcraft and they all soon conjure up various spells and curses against those who even slightly anger them. The witches like it because "Teen angst meets magic along with some iconic lines that many witches use in their own life. (i.e. Magic is neither black nor white, it is both because nature is both.)"

Practical Magic (1998), Two witch sisters, raised by their eccentric aunts in a small town, face closed-minded prejudice and a curse which threatens to prevent them ever finding lasting love. The witches like it because "it is the closest thing Hollywood has ever come to real witchcraft. Herbal magic, judgement, finding acceptance within yourself, the wonderful family of women, this movie covers it all." 

This has lead to much disinformation. An article on entitled "Wicca: Many Girls Find it Spellbinding" had some "facts" about Wicca which are not entirely accurate. It portrays Wicca positively as a "religion, not a cult." I will list their alleged facts (some of which I have truncated to the most important part) in red and comment on each.

  • People who practice Wicca (which is old English for "wise") believe that God has a masculine and feminine side, and that both sides are equal. Basically true, although "God" is not the God of Christianity but of pagan pantheism, "yin and yang."
  • Wiccans strongly believe in the importance of nature and the need to act responsibly in protecting the environment. They are nature worshiping heathens like Bergoglio  
  • They believe in the "supernatural" powers of the mind, including extrasensory perception (ESP), which are believed to be "gifts" available to everyone, not just witches. For those who subscribe to pantheism, this is true enough, but not true of all. Some call on demonic forces
  • They believe in reincarnation. Many do as it comports with pantheistic pagan belief systems
  • Wiccans don't believe in Satan or a Devil. False. Many may not, but some do, or realize there are other forces at work besides "nature."
  • There is no central governing body. Wiccan groups are autonomous. True
  • There are many Wicca sects. Some Wiccans are part of groups called covens; others practice their craft alone. There are no formal sects; those whose beliefs comport most closely stick together and some go it alone
  • Wiccan celebrations, often in the form of services held in peoples' homes, sometimes follow the seasons of the year or phases of the moon. True
  • Wiccans believe in "sacred space," the rough equivalent of a cathedral (which can be created anywhere) in which is cast a "magick circle" to protect them from "negative energy." True
  • Wiccans often wear a pentacle -- a five-pointed star surrounded by a circle -- as a symbol of their beliefs, and liken it to Christians wearing a crucifix or Jews wearing a Star of David. It is a Satanic symbol used in Freemasonry [also called the pentagram] and it is blasphemous to liken it to a Crucifix.  
  • Spells are seen as a form of prayer. "Spells are an integral form of witchcraft, just as confession is in Catholicism," wrote Sonia S., 17, in Teen Voices. Spells and the Sacrament of Penance have nothing in common except that those who use the former are in need of repentance, conversion and then penance. 
  • Wiccan beliefs and practices do not require anyone to give up their faith of origin. Technically true, as they claim all faiths are good (except Traditional Catholicism). Yet how can anyone merge, e.g.,  Protestant religion with Wicca? They are mutually exclusive
Proselytizing Wiccans
First, you must be aware of what they are and not fall for the propaganda. Make sure your children know their Faith, and realize what Neo-paganism/occultism is so as to avoid it. This garbage is ubiquitous, so always monitor what they read and watch.  This will help protect your family.

As to Wiccans themselves:
  • Always pray before engaging them. Especially pray to St Joseph, Terror of demons, and St. Michael the Archangel. Wear a St. Benedict medal-crucifix
  • They are hard to reach as they believe there is no One True Religion for all. They think the Church is "bad" for having "discriminated" and "persecuted" them
  • Do NOT call them Satanists even though they stem from Satan, as they will stop listening to you
  • The best way to approach them is to get them thinking. Ask, "How do you know Wicca is true?" "If all religions are good, why be Wiccan?" "How do you know Christianity is not true?" Be prepared to counter the lies against the Church, and just like Unitarian Universalists, ask what they personally believe. Find out where they stand ideologically. Wiccans are all over the place. You could be talking to an occultist who believes in Satan, or a feminist pagan. It is important to find out what they believe so as to point out the inconsistencies and internal contradictions of their beliefs when combined with being Wiccan. If they are pantheistic, ask how can God be personal, as in Christianity, and also an impersonal force in nature as with pantheism. Wouldn't one need to be true and the other false? That would mean that a Christian does need to give up their beliefs to be a Wiccan, right? 
  • If all religions are basically good, ask them to pray with you! This is the best you can do to one given over to the occult. See if they will accept a Green Scapular
 Wiccans are in desperate need of Christ and His Church. They, unknowingly or otherwise, have Satan and his demons as their leaders. Be careful in what your children watch and read, including such "harmless" books and movies like Harry Potter, and "innocent shows" like the old Bewitched series on television. Do not allow them to associate with those who are Wiccans or dabble in witchcraft. If you engage a witch, please do so only after much prayer and preparation, if possible. There is always time for a quick prayer to St. Michael and St. Joseph, Terror of demons.  There are no "good" witches.

If you don't believe witches are to be taken seriously, remember the Biblical warning, "Witches thou shalt not suffer to live" (Exodus 22:18).