Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Newly Ordained Tulsa Bishop Konderla Dismissing ANOTHER Traditional Catholic Religious Community

(UPDATE:  Bishop Konderla responded to me today in an email.  Read HERE)

This cold Advent evening I'm setting down my eggnog, heavy-hearted to report what I think is another public tragedy in the Diocese of Tulsa, relevant to traditional Catholics here in the Heartland.  

The newly ordained bishop for Tulsa--Bishop David Konderla--is dismissing from his new diocese yet another religious community devoted to the traditional Catholic religious life, known by many local faithful for also actively participating in the Traditional Latin Mass (1962 Missal).

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This time it is the Daughters of Mary, Mother of Israel's Hope, a public association of the faithful preparing for years for permanent approval, originally founded by now retired Bishop-emeritus Edward Slattery of Tulsa and Mother Miriam (a Jewish convert known for her talks on EWTN).  

From their recent Advent/Christmas 2016 Newsletter (emphasis mineLINK
The new bishop of Tulsa told us earlier this month that he does not see a way forward for our community in the Diocese of Tulsa, Oklahoma. In a memo to Diocesan priests and staff, the bishop wrote: “After careful consideration and prayerful discernment, the Diocese of Tulsa has elected to end its affiliation with the Daughters of Mary, Mother of Israel’s Hope and allow the community to continue their apostolic exploration in another diocese.”
 This is a great sadness to us and to many families and individuals in the Diocese of Tulsa and beyond who have worked so hard and given so much to establish our Priory and renovate the guest house that was donated to us.  Yet, we are at peace...

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My Commentary:

I encourage you to look at all the photos in their recent newsletter, especially on page 5 and 6.   LINK 

Do you recall how the same new bishop inexplicably shut down in September the Latin Mass-offering priestly exorcist society--the Doloran Fathers--founded by his Predecessor and Fr. Chad Ripperger?   DIOCESAN MEMO

Like the Doloran Fathers, these sisters (not yet in the novitiate phase) were established by Bishop Slattery, but are also being inexplicably removed by the new bishop, Bishop Konderla.

Both communities are dedicated to our Catholic tradition, widely known for their pious love of the Traditional Latin Mass.

Both received donations and help from many local benefactors to establish an actual Religious House.

For the priests, it was a Monastery north of Tulsa in the countryside, living a removed, quiet life devoted to helping some of the most spiritually tormented souls.

For the sisters, it was a Priory and Guesthouse in the city area, where they have evangelized families with the Catholic Faith.

Do I even  need to ask, why this is happening again?

Please pray for these dear ladies that they might be able to fulfill their vocation in another diocese.  Pray for the future of this Local Church.  And pray for Bishop Konderla that he may understand and support traditional Catholics/traditional Catholicism in his new diocese.  Kyrie eleison.

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Some Recent Blog Posts for My Fellow Okie Traditionalists:

Calling All Okie Traditionalists

History of the Latin Mass in Oklahoma

New Tulsa Bishop (July)

Fall Road Trip to Clear Creek

First Catholics in Oklahoma

58 comments:

  1. Thanks Joseph. Your restraint is admirable. Hopefully Mother Miriam and her sisters will consider moving here to Portland, OR. It's hard to do better than Archbishop Sample.

    The Tulsa Diocese was remarkable for spiritually punching above it's weight (given the small Catholic population), but that's starting to change in the past several months. My heart goes out to the faithful.

    I'm sure this news will make the rounds, and I hope laymen who have an apostolate will draw the appropriate conclusion: avoid the chancery, keep your head down and do your work unnoticed. If your apostolate attracts many fellow Catholics, do not seek canonical recognition/diocesan oversight/lay association of the faithful unless you have no other choice. The next bishop can torpedo all of your work. Religious can't really get around this problem (just read the lives of the saints in the past five centuries--it has happened to hundreds of saints and blesseds), but laymen can. This advice goes triple for lovers of the old mass. Ironically, it was a mainstream priest who exclusively says the Novus Ordo and who sits on all sorts of diocesan committees who convinced me on this point.

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    1. Agreed Scott! Perhaps they could share the large home of the Sisters of Reparation, Sacred Wounds of Jesus!

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    2. Agreed Scott! Perhaps they could share the large home of the Sisters of Reparation, Sacred Wounds of Jesus!

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    3. Lucky you Scott, Archbishop Sample. Two other great Archbishops are Archbishop Hebda of St. Paul MN and Archbishop Chaput of Philadelphia PA. A great Bishop is Bishop Raica of Gaylord MI. The sisters should be able to find a welcoming home. Important though is prayer. Storm heaven for their bishop's cinversion of heart.

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  2. I appreciate that Scott. I aimed at being as charitable and truthful as I could in the blog post.

    I believe local lay Catholics, especially those who attend the Latin Mass in Oklahoma, have a general duty to publicly defend the traditional Faith (and traditional Mass) from what appears to be going down.

    Even on a purely human level, how can a new bishop come into a diocese and start removing religious communities of priests and sisters, who have monasteries and priories made possible by lay donors.

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    1. Yes, the cruelty of it blows the mind. It effectively severs all of the relationships they've made, both with serious Catholics and in their evangelistic outreach. It harms the continuity of the local Church in not respecting the judgment and direction of his holy predecessor. Finally, it's unjust to the donors and the community in that they've shown financial stability, and yet must liquidate their assets.

      Bottom line, very few bishops have a genuine fear of the Lord. Very few bishops also have a genuine fraternal spirit with serious Catholics. At a Men's Conference last week, the widely-travelled Fr. Calloway MIC told a few of us that Archbishop Sample was very unique in that he actually stuck around the conference after delivering his homily. Most just scram.

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    2. "At a Men's Conference last week, the widely-travelled Fr. Calloway MIC told a few of us that Archbishop Sample was very unique in that he actually stuck around the conference after delivering his homily. Most just scram."

      Most bishops wouldn't even attend such a conference in the first place.

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  3. I will be praying for the Diocese of Tulsa. I am not very computer literate, therefore I would ask others to send this article to all the blogs out there.

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  4. Oh this saddens me, I was really wondering if they would be next.i am deeply concerned for Clear Creek.. I wonder if they would consider Wisconsin? The Madison area would benefit greatly from these holy women!

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    1. Clear Creek is of pontifical right, so the local ordinary will have to take his grievances to Rome if he wants to kick out the monks.

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  5. Wait, does this mean they have to move to another location or does it mean that they are not affiliated with the diocese?

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  6. I think we all knew this was coming.

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  7. If I lived there I would cease all donations to the diocese immediately.

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  8. J.M.J.

    We are near the end of the fifth era of the Church, as outlined by the Ven. Bartholomew Holzhauser back in the 1600's, an era in which the Church will suffer much from heresy, despoiling, and such so as to purify her from worldliness.

    In His Holy Face apparitions to Sr. Marie of St. Pierre in the 1800's, Our Lord told her that He will punish the Church for the lukewarmness of her believers -- by means of revolutionary men.

    It is worth rereading Yves Dupont's "Catholic Prophecy: The Coming Chastisement" because it discusses our times, times of great chaos and persecution both fro within and without.(Book available as a free pdf download here https://archive.org/details/CatholicProphecy ,
    along with lots of other free Traditional Catholic books at the main site http://www.traditionalcatholic.co/free-catholicbooks/ .)

    We are living in the age prophesied above, and our lives, religious, priestly, or lay, must be lived with the zeal and poverty of the Apostles. Our reward will be great in Heaven if we persevere in the True Faith, and many of us may yet live to see the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart that brings this sorrowful age to a close.

    Our Lady of Fatima, ora pro nobis!!

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  9. How do I reach these sisters? I want to offer them 25 acres and buildings!

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    1. https://motherofisraelshope.org/contact/

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    2. Your generosity is inspirational! God bless you ��

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  10. I also fear for Clear Creek. A HOLY bishop welcomes the prayers of faithful Orders and Sisters. Sadly, I would not be surprised to learn of more such appointments under the present pontificate. May Our Lady of Fatima intervene for the sake of the Church in this 2017.

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    1. Clear Creek is there by pontifical right, so the local ordinary can't do anything of his own volition.

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    2. If you want to fear for anyone, fear for the FSSP at Most Precious Blood, not the monks of Clear Creek, who (as Mariojithm says) are of pontifical right, which gives them the protection of the Holy See.

      Whereas the FSSP do not have the same level of protection in terms of their apostolate in Tulsa - though it would be quite a step for Bishop Konderla to evict them.

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  11. I know Bishop David personally, and have known him for years from my time at Texas A&M. While I understand that this is very upsetting and confusing to those affected, I do know that Bishop David is one of the holiest, prayerful men of God I have ever encountered, and trust his discernment and his judgement completely. I have watched him lead a college community of thousands, build personal relationships with students and parish members, and inspire a reconversion in countless young people simply by his example of faith and humility. I fully trust that if Bishop David was given the opportunity to explain his reasoning, he would do so with grace and clarity.

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    1. I wonder how he would have liked it if the Ordinary in his prior post booted him out after "prayer and discernment"?

      There's something called "justice" in this life, and the last place anyone in the world should look for it today is among the current bench of Catholic bishops.

      They are among the most unjust people on the planet.

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    2. April, I understand your affection for him, but I was told from one of his college parishioners Fr. Konderla refused several times to allow an old priest to say the Latin Mass at his church for a group of college students who requested it.

      In his Memo to Mother Miriam's sisters, and Memo to the Doloran Fathers back in September (both communities were devoted to traditional Mass) he gave absolute no clarity about his reason.

      Could you please email him and ask for clarity?

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    3. You may want to write him, April, and ask him why he has chosen to behave in such draconian fashion. It is no inspiration to see faithful Catholic communities earmarked for immediate dismissal - especially by one who is, as you have described, appearing to be one of the holiest and prayerful men of God.

      The message, perhaps wrongly, will come across that he is not going to tolerate Catholic Tradition. And while that may play out for a while with some, in the long term, such rabid intolerance of that which is wholly Catholic only serves to fuel Catholic traditional practice.



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    4. Well, he certainly has the opportunity to explain. He could if he wanted to, just as Pope Francis could answer the dubia. This smacks of his own personal aversion to the TLM causing him to deny it to the people of his own diocese. They should protest against this high-handed totalitarian nonsense.

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    5. You're deluding yourself. This man is an enemy of Catholic Tradition which means he should be the enemy of every Catholic. Wake up and look around at what is happening in the Church. This guy is part of the problem.

      If he had the "opportunity" to explain? What's stopping him? He doesn't explain because he has no explanation that would fit into his bs veneer of "prayerfulness and holiness." This man is a wolf. Call him such. Enough already cowing to bad bishops like this one.

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    6. I fully trust that if Bishop David was given the opportunity to explain his reasoning, he would do so with grace and clarity.

      He could Twitter it after one of his bike rides!

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    7. You will know the by their fruits.

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    8. First of all, it is inappropriate to address a bishop or any priest by their first name. Secondly, for a bishop to dismiss an order of exorcists while Black Masses are being said in the same state is utter lunacy.

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    9. You can find the same happy-clappy fun environment in many Protestant churches. The man is Christ's enemy.

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    10. Exactly. All speculation without knowing what really went on. This my friends divides the church not what language we pray at mass or how we receive communion.

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    11. I'll come right out and say it, I think this bishop is a heretic and plays for the wrong team. He's very sneaky but obvious in his actions. Hopefully he won't stick around long. :/

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  12. This wouldn't be the same David Konderla who was in College Station a few years ago would it?

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    1. I didn't know he was a Bishop now. I knew him when he was Fr. Konderla. I'm very saddened to hear this is the direction he's going in.

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  13. Pope can stopped this power of allowing Bishops to take out something as its holy and innocent. to increases traditional Latin mass along with religious order. Its part of saving souls and good health

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  14. Certainly, the SSPX will welcome you. God bless you and your work.

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    1. The SSPX might become a prelature soon, and has said that would allow them to incorporate any new religious order under them independent of the local bishop. If Mother could sit tight in Tulsa for a few months, she might not have to liquidate their property and risk the same thing happening in another diocese. One idea.

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    2. Or she could recognize the state of necessity and the unjust suppression (an unjust law is not a law at all) and run to the SSPX now - why wait for the prelature?

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  15. If you aren't already, you have to start attending/supporting your SSPX chapel. It is the prudent thing to do. Even if you are still allowed an FSSP or Diocesan Mass by your bishop (for the moment), how long do you think that permission is going to last without the SSPX's presence in your diocese? Stop giving money to anything that has to do with the diocesan bishop and give whole-heartedly to traditional causes elsewhere. The traditional cause cannot be advanced effectively without the SSPX as the counter-weight.

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  16. This is very sad. In the past, I have featured her on my blog: https://thewarourtime.com/?s=miriam

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  17. While indeed prayer is needed for your bishop's change of heart and the future of these orders, you must DO SOMETHING: have a letter writing campaign, get the papers involved. Always stay Christ-centered, activism on its own is dangerous, but you must be willing to put your faith, prayers and beliefs to truly be holy. Both body and soul oriented toward the same goal. If you are not willing to walk the walk then be prepared for the rest of the world -- even people who are even supposed to be on your side -- to treat you as if you don't matter.

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  18. Mother you and the sisters are welcome to see if the Diocese of Dallas will welcome you we got a Traditional Catholic Church Mater Dei

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  19. I am very sorry to hear this.

    The anti-Traditionalists seem to have taken over.

    I have met Mother Miriam way back in the day when she was known as Rosalind Moss and then shortly thereafter when she was just starting her community.

    A holy woman of God who will, with the help of the Lord, find a home somewhere for her sisters.

    Catechist Kev

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  20. This has happened to many starting communities, especially if they are traditional. When established or started with permission by one bishop, the next one to come into office often dismisses them or "suppresses" them. There needs to be some protection from new bishops for these communities that are started with permission of the previous bishop, unless there is a very grave and serious reason.

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  21. In 1997, I was a freshman at Texas A&M University, and immediately, Fr. David Konderla (known as "Fr. David") made an impression on me.

    His homilies were overtly catechetical, drilling the fundamentals of Catholicism into his audience, taking poorly catechized Catholics from ground zero and building faith and zeal in them.

    His homilies would make anyone with "liberal" tendencies squirm in the pew. He regularly preached on contraception and abortion. He was unapologetically affiliated with Priests for Life and would stand alongside us in prayer before the Planned Parenthood clinic in Bryan, TX.

    He heard a number of my confessions and would challenge me to never commit that sin again, giving me solid advice.

    Fr. David took me and 4 other young men on a road trip across several states to visit monasteries and seminaries during "Seminary Sprint" as we discerned the priesthood. I remember him recounting his desire, in his own discernment, to be a Trappist monk... but God called him to diocesan ministry.

    It was due, in part, to Fr. David that I pursued an MA in Theology from Franciscan University and worked on the parish level for 2 years and the diocesan level for 5 years.

    During my diocesan years, I learned, firsthand, that bishops make unpopular decisions in the public eye for very good reasons that they cannot reveal for both legal reasons, and because, often revealing that reason would only be self-serving to "clear their reputation" but would actually harm the reputation of those who were adversely affected by their decision... so they keep their reasons private, so as not to cause detraction.

    I urge everyone to hold their tongues, to hold their judgement, and to give Bishop Konderla the gracious benefit of the doubt. You don't know what you don't know.

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    1. Carson,

      People had good hopes for Bishop Konderla given other testimonies like yours, as well as the reputation of the Aggie Catholic community. So your testimony does not surprise those who have been tuned in. However, Catholicism can go much deeper than the kind of "conservative orthodox JPII" priest of which Konderla is an exemplary example (up until suppressing two traditional communities). In your words, the bishop "doesn't know what he doesn't know", and "conservative catholicism" has often swallowed a great deal of Enlightenment thinking/methodology without realizing it. So Fr. Ripperger and his community could write/say some outlandish things (to modern ears), but those things are actually true at the spiritual level. Baby Catholics may recoil at them, but someone needs to say them, as God is always beckoning us further into his kingdom.

      You ask that we give the bishop "the gracious benefit of the doubt", but you turn the onus back on the suppressed communities and say that Konderla is silent to avoid revealing the communities faults. Perhaps they deserve "the gracious benefit of the doubt"?

      Finally, I worked at a diocese for a year while I was still a lapsed Catholic shacked up with my girlfriend (exhibit A in how worldly today's church is), and it was an ugly sausage factory (at the highest levels of decision anyway). As several priests have quipped, "If you want to lose your faith, work for the church."

      Pax Christi.

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    2. And what praytell has Bishop Konderla come to know in these few short months that Bishop Slattery didn't in over two decades?

      You can't have it both ways, Carson. If you support Konderla, you're failing to give "the gracious benefit of the doubt" to Bishop Slattery, whose judgment and discernment were altogether opposite his successor.

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    3. So it seems, Carson Weber, that recent events are in direct opposition to your personal experience; and the validity of which you relate I accept.

      So I restate the contradictory evidence of the sanctity of Father David on a personal level vs. the now Bishop Konderla's two brutal blows against Tradition (a.k.a) Catholicism.

      Which one is real? It cannot be both.

      For over 50 years, when this type of thing has occurred, Catholics have been trained to submit, pay up, hold hands and pray on. "He must be holy because he's the bishop."
      We've been trained in double-think: "destruction of the Church is not destructive because the Bishop is in charge" -of the destruction.

      How's that workin' out for ya'? - I mean, how has that worked out for any of us? It has only perpetuated the destruction. We've got to snap out of this mental enslavement to the Church's internal enemies.

      There is a means of explaining how Father So-and-So morphs into Bishop Tradhammer, in a word it is known as false opposition, or controlled opposition. Incidentally, the Soviet communists were masters in manufacturing it (hint very much intended. How does it work? Check here: http://www.traditioninaction.org/bev/177bev04_27_2015.htm

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    4. Holding our tongue has ended with millions of Catholics going to hell. Bishop Dave is a neo Catholic. You went to Franciscan University, headquarters of Charismatic Catholics. There are also pro-life Prot sects.

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    5. As my pastor, who celebrates the TLM for our small country parish, has said in a thread on Facebook:

      ---
      Well-said, Carson. To this, I would add that the business of starting a religious community is very VERY complicated. I don't know the ins and outs of this particular community, but I have witnessed, firsthand, the travails of several nascent religious orders, and while all of them could be described as "orthodox" "faithful" even "Traditional" those three adjectives do not exempt them from the basic human foibles which can make the establishment of such a community difficult if not impossible. That said, I would give this bishop the benefit of the doubt that his actions were not motivated by an animus against Tradition or orthodoxy, but, as you so eloquently stated, due to circumstances that, in charity are best left unsaid.

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    6. Great, so a priest who admittedly knows nothing about the situation at hand thinks you're spot on; fine endorsement right there

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  22. By law, the bishop doesn't owe the faithful any explanation for what he has done. He had the authority to do it.

    And yet, ejecting two nascent traditional orders from his diocese (both invited and established by his immediate predecessor) in his first months as ordinary is bound to raise alarums on the part of traditionalist Catholics in Tulsa - and he had to know that.

    Perhaps there were, in fact, genuine problems of a spiritual or ethical nature in these societies. (It would be rare, but not the first time a traditionalist group has had such issues. Even we are not immune from human frailty.) And if so, one can understand the concerns to avoid the dangers of calumny or detraction in mentioning such concerns publicly. But I think there's at least a moral obligation to consider the continued support these groups might gain from locals who have been supporting them financially. If there are genuine issues with these groups, their donors have some right to know - even if it is only a moral and not a canonical right.


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  23. I am so sorry that the Sisters have to go through this trial but I'm sure that if the Lord is allowing it to happen to them there must be a reason.
    I have been praying for a long time for a Community like these sisters to be near me in MA. Who knows, perhaps the Lord may be answering the prayer of someone like me.
    In any case. I also will pray for their Bishop - that Mother Mary with her son Jesus will show him the will of God and give him the grace to carry it out.
    B.S. T'O.Carm

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